While more than 5 million Americans develop hernias each year, the majority of them are found in males.

Some men develop hernias from birth, often as a result of the inguinal canal not healing properly after the testicles drop. Some are caused by overuse or even trauma.

No matter what their cause, untreated hernias can swell and cause extreme pain, or even trap the intestines, eventually obstructing or even strangling the bowel.

During National Men’s Health Month, learn all about hernias, what causes them and ways to prevent them.

What is a hernia?

Basically, a hernia is a weakness or tear in the abdominal wall resulting from injury or abdominal pressure that allows internal body parts or organs to push through, creating a bulge.

What are some common causes of hernias?

  • Increased abdominal pressure
  • Pre-existing weak abdomen
  • Heavy lifting
  • Excess weight
  • Chronic sneezing
  • Excessive coughing
  • Abdominal fluid

What are some risk factors for hernias?

  • Aging
  • Injury
  • Weakness after surgery
  • Chronic constipation
  • Scar tissue
  • Family history
  • Physical occupations
  • Premature birth
  • Previous hernia

Can hernias be prevented?

While some hernias are hereditary or the result of a defect, here are 5 ways to help prevent them:

  • Maintain a healthy weight
  • Eat high-fiber foods to prevent constipation
  • Lift from the knees, not the waist
  • Stop smoking
  • Don’t rely on a truss as a solution

For more details on hernias, discover what Mayo Clinic says about diagnosis and treatments.

Consider sharing this with a man in your life who might benefit from learning all about hernias.


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