Every year during the month of November, men around the world put down their razors and sport moustaches for Movember. They grow out their “staches” regardless of how thin or robust they are, to raise awareness for men’s physical and mental health issues.

Movember was started by two friends in 2003 with the sole purpose of bringing awareness to prostate cancer, and it went on to become one of the largest fundraisers for men’s health in history. The movement has since expanded to raise awareness for men’s mental health, suicide prevention, prostate cancer, and testicular cancer. The first Movember only had 30 participants, and now that number has since grown to a staggering 5 million. Participants are asked to set up a donation page and update supporters on the status of their stache to raise funds for the meaningful cause.

Men’s health had always been a quiet issue until Movember brought to light the reality of male mental health struggles, testicular cancer, and prostate cancer. The organization started the conversation, and it has been growing every year since. The reality is 1 in 7 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer, while testicular cancer is the leading type amongst men aged 15-39, and every hour we lose 60 men to suicide. The funds raised through Movember have made a difference in reducing these statistics and improving the quality of life for those who made it through treatment and recovery.

The Movember organization continues to expand and support more medical research projects and health-based initiatives each year. All they ask from you is that you let your lip sweater grow, open a dialogue, and get support from your friends and family. So, pack your razor away in the medicine cabinet until December 1st and take a step towards improving men’s mental and physical health with your 5 million Mo Bros and Mo Sisters around the world.

During the month of November, take the time to learn more about male cancers and the warning signs to look out for. There’s also never a bad time to check in on your male loved ones and friends, and start a dialogue about mental health. Although it’s not something we like to think about, while it’s fresh in your mind, take the time to assess your insurance needs and think about how a cancer diagnosis would affect you and your loved ones.

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