What You Should Know About Hoarding Part I
A lot of people hang onto things from the past, but not to the point where clutter impacts our lives in a negative way or in a way that is harmful to our safety and health, as well as sanity. However, there are many people who are considered hoarders, which is someone who is obsessed with collecting pretty much anything. It gets to the point where it becomes dangerous to them, and often it co-occurs with alcohol, prescription drugs, illegal drugs and other forms of substance abuse.
What Is Hoarding
It is divided into two parts, with the first being the act of collecting things that have no value or very little value. The second part is not being able to part with the things that have been collected. Generally speaking, hoarders collect everything from garbage, newspapers, cans, food cartons, clothes and all kinds of other debris.
Animal hoarding is a variant of the disorder, which can involve collecting dozens of animals or even hundreds. It typically starts slow, but then it gets worse as time goes by, and as the items increase, then getting around the home or property can be challenging. Eventually, hoarding gets to the point where the hoarder seems helpless and beyond the chance of getting better.
Hoarders tend to not seek out help or give up their items, regardless of how bad the conditions are and whether or not they know it. Without help from professionals, the hoarder will continue to live the way they are living. In many cases, they reach the point where they are putting their safety at serious risk.
Type Of Disorder
Hoarding is not recognized as a psychological disorder, but experts do believe hoarding is interconnected or linked to other disorders. This includes social anxiety, bipolar disorder and depression to name a few. Some people who have suffered from disorders such as dementia or anorexia may show signs of hoarding.
When patients have compulsive hoarding disorder, then OCD is usually present in them. Sometimes patients will have ADD, but not to the extent of patients having OCD and hoarding disorder. Also, some experts believe that hoarding disorder may run within a family.
The Prevalence Of The Disorder
Is there anything that can be done about the disorder and how widespread is it? The truth is that hoarding is a serious problem for everyone involved. Hoarding doesn’t affect a particular age group, nor does it discriminate against race, age, religion or anything of that nature. When it comes to the elderly, they have had longer to put things away, so they may sometimes naturally have many items in their possession.
Some say that those who are compulsive hoarders tend to be single or are divorced. This is only speculation and there is no hard evidence to suggest this, but there are many situations in which the entire family hoard. This can also include spouses who have the strong desire to collect things.
A&E has a popular series called Hoarders, which covers two case studies of hoarding, and each involves the hoarders themselves and their families. The series documents the issues surrounding the condition and the efforts that families and the hoarders have taken to help with the condition. Also, everyone has agreed to be filmed in order for the areas to be cleaned up.
The producers of Hoarders are constantly looking for people who are willing to share their experiences with hoarding and they were motivated by drawing attention to the condition. It turned out that many cases were not stereotypical. Those who appeared on the show agreed to appear on camera for a period of 3-5 days, and this also went for their family members.
In exchange, those who appeared on the show receive services for free. This included junk removal, mental health support, and professional organizers to name a few. According to A&E’s posting, the professionals involved have experience with helping those with the disorder.
Nobody really knows the extent of hoarding because there are no solid numbers to study. However, there are experts that say that they think 1-2 percent of the population suffers from the disorder or a variant of hoarding. They believe it affects around 2 million people in America. However, those numbers are far higher when you factor in family members who are affected.