Embarrassing illnesses make men shy away

Men should overcome their shyness when seeking health advice, because medical conditions including lice and herpes do not simply disappear by themselves, health experts say.

Half the population would rather suffer in silence than seek advice for embarrassing ailments ranging from thrush to suspect rashes, a survey of 5,000 adults by online pharmacy Masters Direct found.

Men are particularly reluctant to ask for advice, even if they are dying of man-flu or limping around in pain.

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Of those surveyed, 22 per cent of adult men said they would ignore symptoms of lice rather than admit to a pharmacist they had the problem.

A further 18 per cent were too embarrassed to speak to their pharmacist even if they feared they had a sexually-transmitted infection such as genital warts or herpes, in the hope the condition would simply disappear.

One in ten men had unprotected sex because they were too embarrassed to buy condoms from a pharmacy.