Do you know what’s astounding?
Up to 6% of the world’s population engages in hoarding.
Hoarding is a compulsory need to accumulate and hold onto stuff. In extreme cases, a person places themselves at risk by their inability to get rid of things.
Knowing the signs of hoarding is crucial so that you or a loved one isn’t consumed by an obsessive collection. This article shares five of those signs so you can seek and get help before the obsession becomes a hazard.
1. Depressive Episodes
Hoarding aligns with depression and anxiety.
A person may feel compelled to fill a void with stuff. Collecting can:
- Quiet the internal monologue and turmoil
- “Get back” at troubling family and friends
- Provide a purpose when things feel aimless
Talk with a loved one about their depression or anxieties. Or, for yourself, seek professional guidance and behavioral therapy. Spend more time with others not only to see the signs but to offer support.
2. Disorganized Clutter
Nearly every home has one of those ‘catch-all’ junk drawers. A lot of us have bouts of being messy and disorganized. But things eventually get clean and tidy.
A hoarder? Well, there’s no organization to the clutter.
Hoarders tend to pile whatever they hold onto into a room. There’s no method to their organization. In extreme instances, it causes major dangers in the home.
Dangers of escalating clutter into extreme hoarding could include:
- Falling items and debris
- Mold and organic rot
- Blocked fire escapes
A junk drawer that becomes a junk pile is one such early sign. Look for others like stuffed closets and growing mounds of dishes, laundry, and/or papers.
3. Defensive Behavior
You may pick up on audible cues as early signs of hoarding tendencies:
- Aggravation if you move their things
- Defensiveness if you recommend getting rid of items
- Beratement if you threw something out
Hoarders tend to be overly protective of their things. Some have breakdowns and major anxiety episodes when items are moved/removed.
A hoarder’s defensiveness is why you’ll see pros work with them (much like therapy). It’s why many have to act fast, requiring same-day rubbish removal, before the individual rescinds their decluttering decision.
4. Financial Issues
Hoarding can often lead to financial strain because of obsessive collecting. The individual may forgo paying bills to satisfy their need to hoard.
- Has the individual missed bill payments?
- Are they behind on rent and/or debts?
- Do they hide their finances from you?
Collecting items shouldn’t get in the way of the necessities. These are signs there may be a problem. Act quickly before these financial issues become a huge issue!
Don’t Ignore the Signs of Hoarding
The signs of hoarding are clear once you understand what they are.
You’ve still got time to remedy the situation. Take action and help yourself or a loved one before the hoarding takes hold. Don’t let it become a hazard.
What else could you do to provide help with someone hoarding? Introduce healthier lifestyle choices! Go ahead and check out the lifestyle blogs for more tips, today!
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