A hoarding disorder is described as the need to acquire an inordinate number of items and stores them in a disorganized manner. These items aren’t usually valuable, and thus, it only results in unmanageable amounts of junk.
How Does Hoarding Become a Problem?
– Once the amount of clutter begins to interfere with everyday living, then it can be an indication that the hoarding disorder has become out of control. An example of this would be the bathroom or kitchen becomes inaccessible because these places have been filled with clutter.
– The clutter has been negatively affecting the person’s quality of life or his loved ones. For instance, the hoarder becomes upset when someone tries to get rid of his clutter, or clean his mess.
Is It Treatable?
The truth is, hoarding disorders are very difficult to treat, because a lot of hoarders don’t see this as a problem at all. Then, then are those who have little awareness of how this behavior has been negatively affecting their life or the lives of others living with them. Some are aware that this isn’t normal, but they are too scared to seek for help, because they don’t want to be judged.
For those who are concerned about their loved ones hoarding unnecessary items, it’s important to encourage the person to seek for help, because you cannot simply discard his things, hoping that it would fix the problem. Doing something like this would just make everything worse, that it can even lead to mental health problems, or severe loneliness.
Why a Person Hoards
There are a number of reasons why a person becomes a hoarder. This can be a symptom of another mental disorder, but could also be the cause of severe depression or self-neglect. Based on research, those who live alone, unmarried, had a deprived childhood, or have a family history of hoarding, usually ends up becoming one.
The Difference Between Hoarding and Collecting
A lot of people collect valuable items, such as books, action figures, or stamps, and that is completely normal. The difference between a “collection” and a “hoard” is how these items are organized.
A collection is usually well-organized, and the items are pleasant to the eyes for viewing. On the other hand, a hoard is usually disorganized, and takes up a lot of room.
Signs of a Hoarding Disorder
A hoarder may exhibit some of these habits:
– Collecting things that aren’t really valuable at all. This includes carrier bags, junk mail, or items that they intend to repair or reuse.
– They find it difficult to organize and categorize items.
– It’s hard for them to make decisions.
– They struggle to perform everyday tasks, such as cleaning, cooking, and paying bills.
– They become too attached to the items, that they don’t want others to borrow or use these.
Hoarding usually starts in teenage years, and it gets more noticeable as the person ages. Usually, hoarding becomes problematic once the person becomes older.
What Can Be Done
If you or someone you know may be a hoarder, the best thing you can do is accept the fact that you are. Then, try to be open and talk to people close to you, and let them give suggestions or help you overcome the problem. Likewise, you can also consider seeking for professional help.
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