We thrive when our communities thrive. The opposite is also true — when we overlook our health, we can negatively affect those around us.
With 1 in 6 Black men diagnosed with prostate cancer (PC), the disease affects not only fathers, husbands, brothers, and sons, but also our friends and coworkers.
Being honest about our prostate health isn't easy, but it's necessary. And talking about prostate cancer doesn't stop with our families. We've got to include our larger communities in these conversations because it affects us all. Looking out for one another is what we do.
What are the ingredients we can use to make a difference against prostate cancer?
- Early conversations with our doctors about PSA (prostate-specific antigen) blood test screening
- Tracking our PSA levels
- Having empowered conversations with our health care teams
- Talking about our PC risks with our family and other Black men
I THINK THE BIGGEST THING IS THAT NOBODY THINKS IT CAN HAPPEN TO THEM. THEN AS YOU START TO READ AND YOU START TO UNDERSTAND, AND YOU START TO REALIZE THERE ARE A LOT OF THINGS THAT ARE MORE PREVALENT IN OUR COMMUNITIES.
Shannon Sharpe, Pro Football Hall of Famer, Host of Undisputed, Talk That Talk Ambassador, Prostate Cancer Survivor
We're no stranger to facing tough odds. That's why we need to talk about prostate health, even if it initially seems complicated and frightening. And when facing a prostate cancer (PC) diagnosis, we may ask ourselves:
- Who do I trust?
- Who's really on my side?
- Who's going to be there for me if I get sick?
- How will this affect my future or my loved ones?
These questions can help reveal whose support is available without asking. It's important to take note of these people, keep them close, and communicate the kind of support you need from them.
BUILDING A SOLID CIRCLE OF SUPPORT AND TRUST
It's important to have a support network to help you succeed with your prostate health goals. Your circle of family and friends can assume many responsibilities and offer a range of viewpoints. Here are some ways members of your community can help you:
- Your next-door neighbor may be able to run errands or watch your kids while you're at a doctor's appointment
- A significant other or your grown children can help provide you with the emotional encouragement you need to remain strong throughout your journey. They can also be another set of ears and advocate for your during your doctor appointments
- The members of your church may be able to offer prayers or spiritual guidance
- Your favorite cousin may have had prostate cancer himself and can relate to your experience and share
Whoever you have around you, they want to see you healthy and happy. You can ask for their support while also using the links below: