The study of over 2,000 adults by life insurance provider Beagle Street shows that a third of British adults (33%) are not checking themselves as much as medically recommended for signs of treatable health conditions including breast cancer and testicular cancer.

Men are much less likely to check themselves for signs of critical illnesses than women with nearly a fifth (17%) admitting they never check their body for signs of illness. The findings show that 91% of motorists check their vehicle for signs of wear and tear at least once a year while nearly a third of these (29%) fail to adequately check their own bodies in the same timeframe.

Worryingly nearly two thirds of British adults (62%) do not know how to perform a self-health check at home such as inspecting for lumps and bumps. Women are more confident with checking their bodies with almost half (43%) saying they know how to perform a comprehensive health check compared to just one in three men (32%).

To encourage people to pay attention to their health this year, Beagle Street has teamed up with BBC Health Check presenter Dr Ayan Panja to launch an online Body MOT outlining how to check for common signs of illness at home with advice on what to do should you spot anything unusual.

Dr Ayan Panja comments "The figures don't necessarily surprise me, although they are significant. Men are often told to man up and just crack on with things when they're feeling ill. There are lots of reasons and, to be fair, things are improving but they are still around twice less likely to visit the doctor than a woman. Of course, there is no right answer to self-examination: for instance, there is no evidence that breast self-examination saves lives, but it is important to be breast aware. Looking out for changes in any body part or system is an ongoing process and a good time to do it may be when you're having a bath or shower. The basic rule of the Body MOT is that if something looks or feels out of the ordinary to you, get it checked out."

The online Body MOT allows users to identify what to look for and understand causes of irregularities on eleven body parts; head, eyes, mouth, neck, chest, urinary, arms & legs, abdomen, testicles, breasts and skin.

Matthew Gledhill, Managing Director at Beagle Street, commented "The research showing that people aren't checking themselves as regularly as they should be isn't altogether surprising as we see a similar trend with people taking out life insurance - there is sometimes a tendancy to put it off or have a belief that 'it won't happen to us'. Our Body MOT guides people on how to check for signs of critical illnesses and what to do if you spot anything unusual, and with Beagle Street you can get critical illness cover in just ten minutes online meaning your family will be financially protected if anything happens to you."

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Brits are failing to do body MOT's

Brits are failing to do body MOT's

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