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CLEVELAND (WJW) — A new survey by a local hospital shows just how much the pandemic is impacting men’s mental health and their behavior.

“We all know that men aren’t great at going to the doctor,” said Dr. Peter Bajic with the Cleveland Clinic’s Center for Men’s Health.

And now, a national survey by the Cleveland Clinic is revealing the coronavirus pandemic is having a drastic effect on the mental health of men.

“77 percent of men expressed they were stressed with what is going on with COVID-19.  Unfortunately, two-thirds of men also expressed they didn’t feel comfortable talking about their mental health and how this is affecting it,” said Dr. Bajic.

Bajic and a team surveyed 1,000 men who revealed many are struggling to stay healthy during the pandemic.

“It was pretty surprising to find out that when men expressed what was stressing them out the most, it was the health of their family, the state of the economy, and pretty close to last on the list was their own health,” said Bajic.

About three in five men surveyed said COVID-19 had a greater negative impact on their mental health than the 2008 recession. Half of men have put off seeing a doctor over the last few months.

“About half of them said they feel less healthy, a quarter have gained weight, 15 percent have increased alcohol use,” said Bajic.

And while some are struggling, others have reported starting healthier habits.

 The survey also revealed most men are optimistic about the future despite COVID-19.

The survey is all part of the Cleveland Clinic’s fifth-annual “MENtion It” campaign, which aims to address the fact that men often do not mention health issues.

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