Two Factors that can Decrease Life Expectancy Among Males

On this page, we explain two factors that can decrease life expectancy among males.

Factors Decreasing Life Expectancy Among Males: An In-depth Analysis

Life expectancy is a measure of the average number of years a person can expect to live, given the current mortality rates in a particular population. Over the years, research has highlighted various factors influencing life expectancy. For males, certain factors have been specifically identified to decrease their life expectancy compared to their female counterparts. This article will explore two such significant factors and provide real-world examples to elucidate the impact they have on male life expectancy.

Two Factors that can Decrease Life Expectancy Among Males

Two factors that can decrease life expectancy among males are risky behaviors and a reluctance to seek medical help. Males often engage in hazardous activities, such as excessive alcohol consumption, smoking, and reckless driving, influenced by societal expectations and gender roles. This propensity for risk can lead to severe health complications and accidents. Furthermore, men typically exhibit a hesitancy towards seeking timely medical attention due to cultural norms, perceptions of masculinity, or fear of diagnosis. This delay can result in late-stage diagnoses of treatable diseases or the exacerbation of health issues, both of which can shorten life expectancy.

1. Risky Behaviors and Lifestyle Choices

Explanation: Males, particularly in certain cultures and age groups, are often more likely to engage in risky behaviors than females. These behaviors include excessive alcohol consumption, smoking, reckless driving, and engaging in violent activities. The propensity for males to take higher risks can be linked to a combination of societal expectations, gender roles, and biological factors.


  • A study conducted by the World Health Organization (WHO) found that men account for 58% of all alcohol-related deaths. Chronic alcohol consumption can lead to various health issues like liver cirrhosis, cardiovascular diseases, and cancers, all of which can decrease life expectancy.
  • According to global statistics, men are more likely to be involved in road traffic accidents than women. For instance, in the US, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) reported that in 2019, 71% of motor vehicle crash deaths were males. Risky driving behaviors, such as speeding or driving under the influence, play a significant role in these figures.

2. Reluctance Towards Seeking Medical Help

Explanation: Men are generally less likely to seek medical attention when faced with health issues, compared to women. This reluctance can be attributed to cultural norms, perceptions of masculinity, or fear of diagnosis. Unfortunately, this delay in seeking medical attention can result in late-stage diagnosis of treatable diseases, leading to reduced treatment efficacy and shortened life expectancy.


  • Prostate cancer is the second most common cancer among men worldwide. While it can be treatable when detected early, many men either neglect regular check-ups or ignore symptoms due to fear or stigma. Late-stage detection can significantly reduce survival rates.
  • Mental health is another critical area where men often lag in seeking help. For instance, in the UK, while women are more likely to be diagnosed with common mental health disorders, approximately 75% of suicides are men. The reluctance to discuss or address mental health concerns can lead to tragic outcomes.


Life expectancy is influenced by a myriad of factors, and for men, certain behaviors and societal norms can play a pivotal role in decreasing their years of life. By understanding and addressing these factors, there is potential for bridging the life expectancy gap between genders and ensuring longer, healthier lives for all.

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