Top Ten Causes of Death and Gender

In every country on earth, women outlive men. According to American data, women may expect to live to an average age of 81.2 years, compared to 76.4 for men (Kenschaft, Clark, & Ciambrone, 2016). The prevalence of depression, chronic illness, anxiety, stress, and the likelihood of becoming a victim of violence are higher among women. Despite the social injustices they face, women have longer life expectancies than men. Men also have certain physical advantages over women, although women live longer. At all ages, female mortality rates are lower than male mortality rates (Patel & Rushefsky, 2015). The factors that influence gender disparity in death rate comprise of hormonal manipulations on behavior and physiology, environmental factors including cultural influences and lifestyle.

Top Ten Causes of Death

Almost 75 percent of deaths in America are attributed to only ten causes with the foremost three accounting for more than half. For the past five years, the leading causes of death in the United States have stayed relatively consistent. The 2014 data illustrate that there are 2626418 deaths each year that are registered and life expectancy remains 78.8 years (Patel & Rushefsky, 2014). The top ten causes of death include heart ailment, chronic lower respiratory sickness, cancer, stroke, accidents, Alzheimer\u2019s disease, suicide, kidney disease, diabetes, pneumonia, and influenza. Heart ailments are the leading cause of mortality for both women and men in America accounting 23.4 percent of the total deaths. Secondly, cancer claims 22.5 percent of all lives lost in the USA while long term lower respiratory ailment accounts 5.6 percent (Patel & Rushefsky, 2014). The fourth is unintentional accidents that claim 135053 lives which are about 5.2 percent while stroke is the fifth accounting for 5.1 percent. The Alzheimer\u2019s ailment is responsible for 3.6, diabetes 2.9, pneumonia and influenza 2.1, kidney 1.8 and suicide 1.6 percent.


In all causes of death in America, the number of men remains higher than those of females. The mortality rates for males are 855.1 and 616.7 per 100000 populations (Winter, 2013). The disparities in the gender mortality rate can be attributed to differences in lifestyle and behaviors of both men and women which are influenced my environmental and biological factors.


In America, men\u2019s dangerous, unhealthy traits are the core reason they die at a higher rate than females. Some of the factors that predispose men to death include heavy drinking, cigarette smoking, working in hazardous occupations, gun use and risk-taking in driving and reactions (Kenschaft et al., 2016). Testosterone makes men to be at risk of behavior since it increases aggressiveness which results in higher mortality rate from homicide and accidents. Diseases that are associated with alcohol use and smoking kill more men than female. Men are involved in drinking activities than female such as partying, going to club and taking part in various ceremonies (Promundo & Systems, 2016). Besides, the society supports heavy drinking in men since males who drink are not seen as wrongdoers when compared to women. Females are restricted from some of the behaviors that may increase the risk of getting chronic diseases. For instance, females are not required to drink due to pregnancy, breastfeeding, and responsibilities of taking care of the children (Marmot, 2015). Moreover, men take place in various dangerous activities such as war, working in mines and industries which predispose them to risk factors of developing ailments such as cancer, lung and kidney diseases. Also, men are expected to provide bread for the whole family hence they have much stress than women (Heidelbaugh, 2016).

Work Factors

Distinctions in what is anticipated of women and men and how they are trained to behave contribute in disparity on the health-associated behaviors. In most families in the United States, women are not supposed to work outside the homestead in the cash economy while males are meant to be a fraction of the labor force in all parts of the world (Heidelbaugh, 2016). Since females are less likely to take part in the workforce than males, they suffer less from ruins of work making their wellbeing to deteriorate less quickly. Manual or low-paid work has many adverse effects on health. Men are involved in various manual jobs such as construction, driving manual vehicles, working at night, offering security and farming. Most of the jobs that are physical have higher chances of accidents and injuries hence amplifying the death rates (Kenschaft et al., 2016). The majority of the security personnel are men, and the number of soldiers and police who die in the battlefield are males thus explaining the disparity in gender mortality rate.

Smoking Patterns

About 19 percent of men smoke cigarette when compared to 14.7 percent of females. Males\u2019 broad adoption of tobacco smoking during the 20th century was the main factor behind widening gender mortality disadvantage (Heidelbaugh, 2016). However, the mortality gap had narrowed in the United States when women started to smoke, and men smoked less than previously. The adjustments in the smoking sequence affect men more than ladies because many men have smoked cigarette which is associated with the top ten causes of deaths. Cigarette smoking hurts almost every organ in the human body that resulting to several ailments and decreasing the well-being of smokers. Smoking in America causes above 480000 deaths every year (Winter, 2013). Some of the health risks related to smoking include stroke, heart disease, lung cancer as well as pregnancy complications. Men are affected by the leading causes of deaths in America than females because of tobacco use. On the other hand, women have decreased chances of getting some of the diseases that are exacerbated by smoking hence explaining the death differences.

Female Paradox

Even if ladies rate their wellbeing worse than males and visit health facilities frequently than men from middle age to adolescences, they are less likely to die. The paradox can be elaborated by the distinctions in the incident of chronic diseases that women and male face. Females experience elevated rates of pain such as arthritis and headache and some respiratory problems including asthma, bronchitis and lung predicaments that are not associated with cancer (Patel & Rushefsky, 2015). Moreover, they are likely to suffer from hypertension, reproductive cancers, depression and vision diseases. On the other side, men suffer from smoking -related illnesses such as lung cancer and emphysema, hearing loss and circulatory conditions such as diabetes and heart diseases. Men and women with similar chronic disease have similar self-rate wellbeing, but males are more likely to die than females. This is because men experience severe forms of these diseases and their daily activities and behaviors exacerbate the severity of the illness (Heidelbaugh, 2016).

Men are involved in various activities that entail building the nation, securing and looking for family than females hence they have less time to visit hospitals during minor illnesses.

In most cases, men do not seek preventive care services such as screening for particular illnesses but visit health facilities when the condition has worsened or in the final stage (Heidelbaugh, 2016). Also, males are considered to be strong thus they find it being feminine when going to the hospital due to minor problems such as common cold and headaches which tend to make the chronic diseases to develop slowly without being recognized (Marmot, 2015).


In the United States, men have 3.5 times chances of committing suicide than women because they use fatal methods such as firearms. The cause of increased suicide rate among males is the elevated stigma regarding psychiatric maladies and mental wellness care use (Patel & Rushefsky, 2014). When men experience anxiety, they have high chance of developing psychological predicaments such as depression than females. Men do not share their emotions with other people and do not find care. The tendency of avoiding mental health services is directly associated with gender norms, masculinity and social anticipations of men (Kenschaft et al., 2016). Gentlemen have bigger role in families such as paying for rent, school fees and providing food. Unemployment among youth has more impact among men than females. Due to unemployment stresses and pressure from families, men are likely to commit suicide (Kenschaft et al., 2016).


Conclusively, women are exposed to various social inequalities, but they live longer than men. The life expectancy of females is higher than that of males in America due to lifestyle and behavior factors. Men are involved to various risky factors such as smoking, alcohol use and not visiting hospitals regularly. Besides, men are affected by chronic diseases more severely than women because they seek medical attention at the last stage of illness. The government should establish the public campaign programs that should be focused on educating men about the risks of their lifestyle and behaviors so that to decrease the mortality gap in gender.


Heidelbaugh, J. J. (2016). Men’s Health in Primary Care. New York: Humana Press.

Kenschaft, L. J., Clark, R., & Ciambrone, D. (2016). Gender inequality in our changing world: a comparative approach. New York, NY: Routledge.

Marmot, M. (2015). The health gap: the challenge of an unequal world. New York ; London: Bloomsbury Press.

Patel, K., & Rushefsky, M. E. (2014). Healthcare Politics and Policy in America. New York: M.E. Sharpe.

Patel, K., & Rushefsky, M. E. (2015). Health Care in America: Separate and Unequal. New York: Routledge.

Promundo-US, & Systems, C. R. on A. A. (2016). Promoting gender-transformative change with men and boys: A Manual to spark critical reflection on harmful gender norms with men and boys in Aquatic Agricultural Systems. Washington, D.C: WorldFish.

Winter, R. E. (2013). Unraveling U.S. health care: a personal guide. Lanham, Md.: Rowman & Littlefield.

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