It’s that time of year again… MOVEMBER!

Movember is a great time to talk about men’s health – not just about prostate cancer, but about personal wishes for care, and what’s important for others to know if you couldn’t speak for yourself. It’s called Advance Care Planning – and it’s a great way for loved ones to care for each other.

Advance Care Planning is all about reflecting and communicating your personal care wishes to those around you in case you become incapable of consenting to or refusing treatment or other care. It’s about choosing a Substitute Decision Maker – someone you feel understands your wishes and would speak for you if you couldn’t speak for yourself.

Advance Care Planning is not necessarily about creating a document or writing things down, although it is a good idea to do so if you are able. It’s more about having conversations with family, friends, health care professionals, and especially your Substitute Decision Maker about your wishes for care.

Talking about these things – just like talking about prostate cancer – isn’t always easy – but it’s important. Current research indicates that people who have had these conversations have a higher satisfaction with their care. Also, studies show that when you engage in Advance Care Planning, your family members experience less stress and anxiety because they have the confidence to speak for you.

This Movember, give your loved ones the gift of knowledge and make an Advance Care Plan for yourself.