View Full Version : Us dirty humans...
I'm curious...if men's houses have lower bacteria counts than women's, would that partially explain why women seem to get sick more often?
Why do you think they do "get sick more often"? Males and females contract illness at the same rate, last I noticed.
Perhaps it's just because women are more likely to go see a doctor when they're not feeling well. Or perhaps I have a tendency to date sickly women.
Don't be so PC. Women are _always_ getting sick. I think part of it has to do with the more screwy innards they have, all those hormones. I also agree they are more likely to seek treatment. It would be intesting to see stats on this.
Gee, someone's living up to his user id. Lucifer Antichrist indeed.
Just for the record: I am a woman, I rarely get sick. The only time I have problems with hormones is when I'm on the pill. In my experience, most overly hormonal/emotional women are on the pill, and their conditions improve once they go off it.
Of my acquaintances, I would say that the guys I know actually get sick more than the women. Or maybe they just whine more. They tend to be more prone to seasonal allergies, too.
Anyway, Mr. Antichrist, you're obviously hanging out with the wrong women. Real women are healthy.
While my evidence is anecdotal, like yours, I have to say that in my experience women are put ON the pill when they're asking the doctor to help them with hormonal problems, mood swings, etc. My last 3 girlfriends were all in this boat at some point (2 while I knew them) and the pill stabilized the hormonal swings, and thus the crying jags, etc. A few friends also experienced this.
I've never heard of mood/emotional problems on the pill that got better by going off it
[addendum: I thought I'd double check this -- per our phone conversation two minutes ago, my sister, the gynecologist, says BC pills stabilize hormonal levels and are often used to control moodiness when a woman finds it unacceptable. The opposite (pill causes moodiness, no pill solves problem), she says, just doesn't make any sense medically.
In cases where this IS nevertheless observed, she suspects a placebo effect (i.e. it's not medicine fixing it, it's your mind's belief in the medicine -- or lack thereof -- fixing it.)]
As to the comment that women are "sick" more often due to "hormonal" issues and their 'different plumbing,' so to speak, I suspect if men bled from the genitals every 28 days, that it would be more than "men get sick more;" it would be "labor law mandates a 5 day vacation every 28 days..."
You know, I've never found a doctor who believed that the pill could make someone emotionally unstable. It took me a long time (and one trashed relationship) to realize that it MIGHT be the pill that was causing me to suddenly be neurotic, needy, introverted, and basically a pain in the ass.
I thought it was just me, too, until my sister, then other female friends, confirmed that they too had experienced this. I don't know of anyone who found that life was easier to deal with on the pill.
I find it difficult to believe, now, that you can screw with your body's natural hormone swings and NOT see a corresponding mood disturbance. All I know is that I deal with stress, PMS, "damn-life-sucks" episodes and so on SOOO much better when I'm not on the pill. I think that because the pill is such an easy solution to so many things, most women try their damndest to convince themselves that it's really a good thing and, aside from preventing pregnancy, will help "regulate" your cycle which, for some reason, is considered good - I don't get this, either - what is GOOD about medically forcing your body to be EXACTLY like the "typical" woman's with a precise 28-day cycle? My cycle was NEVER 28 days naturally, and I strongly suspect that forcing it into that was not a good thing.
Ok, end of rant. The pill is like the sacred cow of modern medicine and still can do no wrong in most people's eyes, and I don't think I'm going to change anyone's mind on this, most especially doctors, who never pay any attention to any medical opinion that's not backed up by a degree in medicine.
[[I've never heard of mood/emotional problems on the pill that got better by going off it]]
More commonly, some women find some relief from PMS symptoms while using oral contraceptives. Most don't. A few women, also, tend to experience aggravated PMS symptoms when using certain pills, especially the progesterone-based types (LoOvral, etc). If a woman has undesired side effects while on the Pill, she should first try another type before giving up altogether. It's really a pretty safe drug to take, and a heck of a lot better than an unwanted pregnancy. As for women getting sick more often than men do, check out the statistics on heart disease and longevity.
Oh, and as for women having "screwy innards" -- one word. Prostate.
My fiancee claims that the pill got rid of most PMS symptoms for her, and coupled with the fact that neither of us want kids, then I'd say it is quite the sacred cow for us at this point.
I don't know the details on this, but I remember seeing ABC News report a few weeks ago on a study that had been done on PMS in third-world countries, and that the conclusion was basically thus: for a large percentage of women in the developed world, PMS is psychosomatic. Anybody know any specifics on the study that they could share?
comment on why a 28-day cycle is sometimes good.
I suspect (my experience is limited and anecdotal) that for most women with a fairly regular cycle, it doesn't matter all that much whether the cycle is 25 days or 35 days or some number in between. The times when regulating a cycle becomes really important is at the extremes. I know a woman who only got a period every 4-6 monthes. There was no clear medical reason for this, but she spent a lot of time worrying about it. (At the time I knew her, her doctor was adopting the "let's wait and see what happens" approach to treatment.) I also knew a girl of 14 who would bleed for a week, not bleed for a week, bleed the next week, etc. this was very hard on her body and her lifestyle, so her doctor put her on the pill temporarily, figuring that this would ease the transition into adulthood, and after a few monthes take her off the pill and see if her body had adapted to this new cycle.
[[I don't know the details on this, but I remember seeing ABC News report a few weeks ago on a study that had been done on PMS in third-world countries, and that the conclusion was basically thus: for a large percentage of women in the developed world, PMS is psychosomatic. Anybody know any specifics on the study that they could share?]]
I have not seen that study, but I have seen plenty of evidence, and the majority of medical science concludes, that PMS is a real physiological condition, caused either by hormones or other brain chemistry.
<<I have not seen that study, but I have seen plenty of evidence, and the majority of medical science concludes, that PMS is a real physiological condition, caused either by hormones or other brain chemistry.>>
They said that it was real, but that fewer women actually suffered from it than was previously expected. What I can recall from the newscast was that these scientists (it wasn't revealed what sort of scientists they were, or where they came from) went to Guatemala or somesuch place. There they interviewed numerous women who had never heard of PMS, and very few of them reported ever having had any of the symptoms. Then they showed the women a video about PMS, and nearly all of them began complaining about bloating, cramps, headaches, etc.
But I won't stand by that as fact! The report was very spotty, at best, and my very short overview of what was probably a several-year study can be blamed on network television. I would like to know more if anybody knows where I can find information on the research in question.
[[They said that it was real, but that fewer women actually suffered from it than was previously
expected. What I can recall from the newscast was that these scientists (it wasn't revealed what sort of scientists they were, or where they came from) went to Guatemala or somesuch place. There they interviewed numerous women who had never heard of PMS, and very few of them reported ever having had any of the symptoms. Then they showed the women a video about PMS, and nearly all of them began complaining about bloating, cramps, headaches, etc.]]
I'd have to see the documentary, but the above doesn't prove that it's "psychosomatic." Especially if you tend to have poor health to begin with, the cyclical nature of these symptoms might not be recognized by the sufferer until the syndrome is pointed out to them. Many women with PMS symptoms began experiencing them before they heard of PMS.
You got a question about medical care? Ask an Actuary.
From one published source I have, the average female employee has 45% higher claim costs per year than the average male employee. Removing maternity costs, the female employees are still 29.5% higher. Now, is this because women have more "things" happen to them, or because the "things" that happen are more expensive? Men and Women go into the hospital at the same rate, but men stay longer (again, ignoring maternity). Women have more psychiatric and drug abuse claims. ER is about the same; Women have more surgery; Women have 50% more office visits and almost twice as many drugs (hmmm. May explain the additional Substance Abuse claims!). Even given the fact that men are brought up to "tough it out", this still tells me that women get sick and injured more often then men do.
"There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies and statistics"
Well, this clairly contradicts one famous law of the House Of God (by Samuel Shem):
The delivery of medical care is to do as much nothing as possible. (Well, this does not apply to healing subspecialities like surgery, only for internal med.)
In combination with the absolute fact that women have a nearly ten year higher live expectancy (86 vs. 78 years in Germany) and with the statistical data provided by you, there can be only one conclusion: Men die earlier because the have to get angry about women so often. Us ugly humans
Stefans first law of life: Dont do anything you dont like that good that nobody else performs better
Yeah! You bitches are killin' us!!!
Actually, married men live longer than single ones, and married women live shorter than single ones. so in essence when they con us into getting hitched, we take a few years of life in return. I'm not sure after the ring and all, if its such a good deal for us.
I would love to hear stats on PMS. I think its a combination of physical symptoms, blown out of proportion by her mind.
As for the medical claims, the fact that women tend to see a gynocologist yearly from early teens, to the fact men only do the prostate one after 40 or so is a big factor.
But anecdotally, for the record. I have observed women always getting sick, and always being medicated. Hypocondria is astronomically higher for women too. The pill has always been a calming stimulus to PMS, in my variety of experiences. Holy grail it is.
The facts expressed here belong to everybody, the opinions to me. The distinction is
yours to draw...
[[But anecdotally, for the record. I have observed women always getting
sick, and always being medicated.]]
Thank you for the word "anecdotally" there. Now, I love men to death (so to speak), but I beg to differ with a few of you guys on this issue. I work with AIDS stats, so "anecdotally, for the record," I see 90% male morbidity in my data. I also anecdotally see in the newspaper that over 90% of the homicide perpetrators and victims are male, as are probably about the same percent of prison inmates, in for every kind of criminal offense. Same with most of the drunk driving accidents, and actually accidents of all kinds, from the numbers I've seen. Every male I work with (and most of my neighbors, too, come to think of it) suffers from allergies and takes every kind of med for it. I have no problems there at all, and neither do any of my female co-workers. Oh, and over half the men I know have back problems. They tend to have higher cholesterol, anecdotally again, than females I know, and higher blood pressure, too. When I get around to it, I'll pull up some real epidemiological health stats, too, and we can talk about something more than anecdotes.
Re "regularizing" one's periods. I think the reason for doing this is convenience. It's convenient to know when to expect it. It's inconvenient, to say the least, to be taken by surprise.
I would love to know where some people come up with their facts. The original poster inquired about possible reasons why women seem to get sick more often. I'd love to know where this information comes from. Here's a few replies to some issues posted on this board.
Women don't actually "get sick more often than men." Women's immune systems are by far more responsive and finely tuned than men's, which means that women are in fact more resistant to disease. "Screwy innards" are responsible for many of women's visits to the doctor, but often these are issues of simple maintenance. Get your pap smears and avoid future problems.
The Pill. What kind of discussion is this? There are hundreds of kinds of Pills, and there's a spectrum of reactions to any one of these pills. For purposes of generalization though, most pills prescribed today DO stabilize hormones, they DO regularize periods (I'm going to ignore questions like "what good is a regular period?"), and they DO alleviate menstruating pains and PMS significantly. On the other hand, it is not a good idea to be on certain kinds of Pill for extended periods of time, you should avoid smoking, and so on. The Pill isn't a sacred cow.
Women are hypochondriacs and thus go to the doc more often. In which parallel dimension?? Tests conducted in the last half century (and before) show consistently that women generally handle pain better than men. Men are more likely to visit the doctor's for minor discomforts, and _they_ tend to be the hypochondriacs.
Women are more prone to depression, suicide, etc. Yes. Because many women have to deal with prejudice and oppression and harrassment and social pressures (like having to look like a supermodel) on a daily basis. Not everyone stands up to this kind of psychological battering very well day after day, and some people break down because they do not receive the required support. Fluctuating hormonal levels are sometimes responsible for periods of depressions and related problems. But this is hardly a question of health or getting sick more often than men.
Testosterone. Women produce a lot less of it, and thus spare themselves unpleasant things like getting involved in homicide, general violence, accidents resulting from "aggressive" driving, and so on. Women are also less prone to heart diseases, high cholesterol, diabetes, and many more. True, women have to put up with breast cancer and uterine cancer and nasties like that, but (as someone mentioned here) just think of prostate-related problems and the scary frequency with which they crop up.
Anecdotal evidence is fine, but it's hardly--dare I say it--the Straight Dope
I have endometriosis, and since I've been on the Pill, I notice that the pain seems to last longer. I never suffered from emotional swings untill I started taking it. Maybe this is psychosomatic, but I don't think so.
[[Testosterone. Women produce a lot less of it, and thus spare themselves
unpleasant things like getting involved in homicide, general violence,
accidents resulting from "aggressive" driving, and so on. Women are also
less prone to heart diseases, high cholesterol, diabetes, and many more.]]
I don't know about men being more prone to diabetes than women, or if there's really proof of the testosterone thing, but I liked the gist of your post. For an illuminating, entertaining, upbeat, very readable and scientifically sound book on the biology of women, I highly recommend "Woman, An Intimate Geography" by Natalie Angier.
The facts are: there are more males born than females. Females, on average, live longer than males. Ergo: Males fall TERMINALLY ill more often than females.
[[The facts are: there are more males born than females. Females, on average, live longer than males. Ergo: Males fall TERMINALLY ill more often than females.]]
Somebody did a study once that showed that although females tend to live longer than males do, those years are most likely spent in nursing homes and needing dependent care. So it's quantity of life, but not necessarily always quality.
Yadda yadda yadda,
A lot of talk on PMS it seems. PMS is greatly influenced by caffine (coffee, tea, etc.) If a woman uses caffine, it does not mean they will have PMS, but if a woman does not use caffine, the chances of having PMS are very slim. One may note that PMS "relief" pills often contain caffine. Caffine is a very interesting drug, worthy of a Strait Dope column, no doubt.
As for women living longer than men, there is a very simple reason for it: smoking. As the percentage of female smokers goes up and the male percentage goes down, we should see a equalization of life spans in the future. There has never been found a physiological reason for longer life spans in women, despite much study.
Why this battle of the sexes? In the imortal words of motorist Rodney King, can't we all just get along?
some of this should be taken to the pit.
my belief and experience have shown that women get sick more often then men and/or don't deal w/ it as well.
I offer the following as support to my theory.
1 - Someone said that women's immune system is 'better' then man's (which I cant believe) but assuming that is true then what women might be suffering with is the immune response such as the release of histimemes (sp) to combat colds and the such. If their immune system is better then they would release more and feal worse.
now w/ that one out of the way
2 - A women's body is geared to having children, the development of 2ndary sexual characteristics causes a vast change to the structure of the women's body (hips, breasts, monthly cycling and all the associated hormonal changes) which is an enormous change to that of a male (growing hair, some hormonal cycling) The cycling causes moodiness, etc.. which by itself doesn't mean that she will get sicker but read on
3 I heard a study that men can take cold better then women ( now not all can i know) and men will steal heat from their core to allow them to use their fingers in very cold conditions while women don't. The study suggest that women must maintain there core temp. to protect their unborn child even if there is none there.
4 putting 2 and 3 together it seams like that a women's body is somewhat sacrificial in putting reproduction over survival, at least more so then men. It would seam so to me that a women's immune system would have trouble w/ the constantly changing conditions present in her.
5 the female sexual organ, though it has some protection, is an opening for bacteria and viruses (not to mention yeast). The protection can't be as good as skin even if you include the small opening in the male.
6 the pill or any synthetic hormonal supplement are manufactured slightly different then the natural occurring substances (due to patent reasons) This difference causes side effects.
7 Women are (in my opinion) more susceptible to peer pressure i.e. eating disorders, high heal shoes, makeup, breast enlargement (all of which I can see as causing health problems) , true men suffer from similar pressures but not as often or as severe.
7a - Don't men oppress women and they have to do things mentioned in 7. My answer is that women do it to themselves in a competition. No man have ever forced a woman to get a breast enlargement at gunpoint. (this one's destined for the pit) but girls you are doing it to your self and suffering poor health as a result.
I find it interesting that alot of the discussion on PMS and it being psychosomatic came from men. Wouldn't you have to experience it first to really be able to determine whether its psychosomatic? Every woman's hormonal levels and their accompanying fluctuations are completely different than the next woman, likewise their reaction to those hormones. I feel that may be the reason why science has difficulty pinpointing the true nature of PMS. I think that's one thing that women have always been accused of whether, it's the crazy 'emotional'issues of the 1800's to PMS/psychosomatic issues today, is that its all in our head. Some women may have incredible fluctuations in their hormones but may be able to handle them better due to their emotional make up and vice versa. I don't think the physical side of PMS (bloating, back-aches, etc) can really be logically questioned unless you start at the point that pain is really just "all in your head", which of course it is. Don't get all hot and bothered on this! I'm just saying that I don't think ALL PMS is psychosomatic; I'm sure some of it is. Regardless, PMS is a pain for both the women that experience it and the men they love; viva la difference! If we were the stable, emotional rocks like some men claim to be, where would the fun be in the difference between the sexes?
Carpe Diem! or at least seize something!
[Re "regularizing" one's periods. I think the reason for doing this is convenience. It's convenient to know when to expect it. It's inconvenient, to say the least, to be taken by surprise.]
'Regularizing' also can reduce hugely bloody or hugely painful periods - I originally went on the Pill to attempt to ameliorate my endometriosis (really painful, debiliating, period-related syndrome), but I did notice that it made me go from a period once every 20-55 days that lasted about five hours of real heavy blood and another four of brown guck, to a period every fourth Wednesday at 3:30 PM (unless I'd missed a pill) with the blood lasting about three days, not nearly as heavy as it'd been before, and about another day or two of brown guck. LARGE difference. Yes, it's more convenient, but there's a point where convenience lops over into a life-changing sort of quality.
I personally would like to see Sluggo and K2dave back up even half of their claims, "studies" they've seen, etc. Most of their posts contained "facts" I've never seen or read before.
Remember what I said
"I offer the following as support to my theory."
did you miss that
The only study I State is that women get colder extremities then men, I don't even hint that the other things I said is fact, and I state that it is my theory
Now as for the study as for the colder hands, I remember it on the news or 20 20 or something like that, but for lack of the actual source, I withdraw that one unless someone who saw that can back me up
Very Truely yours
I'd like to see a real source for the "women have colder extremities than men" bit. I have never seen anything indicating a real difference between the sexes, and I've found a good deal of variation between individuals when it comes to distribution of body heat, regardless of sex.
Also, it's very easy to learn simple biofeedback techniques to warm one's extremities. I do it myself, when cycling - I can ride in sub-zero temperature with fingerless gloves and my hands stay warm just by me concentrating on moving blood through them.
It seems to me that there are an awful lot of suppositions floating around here that are no more grounded in fact than old wives' tales. Especially that bit about the female sexual organs being an open door for bacteria etc. Duh, why do you think we have periods regularly? It's a way to clean out the system.
Although it's sometimes difficult to tell, I think that the posters to this topic who seem to think that women are somehow more fragile, prone to sickness, prone to hypochondria, or whatever, are all male. This, to me, says that either these men are gravitating towards females who live up to their expectations of weakness and excessive emotional swings, or they ignore their male acquaintances when *they* are sick, allergy-ridden, having a bad day or pissed off at something for no particular reason.
[[This, to me, says that either these men are gravitating towards females who live up to their expectations of weakness and excessive emotional swings, or they ignore their male acquaintances when *they* are sick, allergy-ridden, having a bad day or
pissed off at something for no particular reason.]]
I agree. Oh, and what percentage of those who shoot their families, co-workers, or classmates to death is female? Talk about "PMS." I've known men who were big babies when they were sick, and when I worked as a phlebotomist, I never had a woman faint while I drew her blood, but I often had male patients drop to the floor. I don't mean to diss all males, here. There are strong and weak individuals in both sexes, clearly. But some of our male posters are sounding a bit misogynist.
People! People! People! A little focus here, please! Our topic was illness in women vs. men --frequency thereof. NOT the Pill. NOT how cold folks were. And surely NOT shooting people [which is not an illness--homicide is a crime]. Can somebody please comment on the topic at hand? [To the ladies--you're right, I dont understand PMS ; but I do sympathise. Even if I cant spell the damn word 'sympathise' correctly].
And since when do we have to stay on the topic at hand?
Yeah! Funny how nobody screams "off topic!" until the "topic" becomes a wee bit touchy.
Bit of PMS there, daniel?
Dear Ladies: the topic doesn't bother me at all. In fact, given the relatively poor hygene that many of my fellow gents practise [as I recall from the lockerroom] an argument could be made that men do ; or should; get sick more often than women. If we don't get sick more often than women, given our slovenly habits--why not?!?! Remember the last time you saw themess of a bachleor apartment or dorm room? The Black Hole of Calcutta couldn't be worse. I was hoping we could talk about the immunological/microbiological aspect, thats all. PS: The PMS women suffer from is an unavoidable and natural function of a woman's body. Why do you classify it as a disease? It is very unpleasant for you, but disease, by definition is an abnormal function of the human body. Is PMS a disease, and if so, why?
[[The PMS women suffer from is an unavoidable and natural function of a woman's body. Why do you classify it as a disease? It is very unpleasant for you, but disease, by definition is an abnormal function of the human body. Is PMS a disease, and if so, why?]]
I don't recall anyone on this thread calling PMS a disease.
Ok so you didn't call it a disease, have it your way. I don't want to generate any hostility on this site or make any enemies [except for "The Voice" that is. Why didn't he name himself "The Braying Cretin"? See <what should I do with all these lousy books> on this website]. But what about contagious disease? Is there a gender difference? I've been reading about the role of plagues in history & modern biowarfare risks- they mention no difference, but male MDs sometimes underreport illness in women.
vBulletin® v3.7.3, Copyright ©2000-2013, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.