Published On: Sun, Dec 15th, 2019

Coping With a Loved One’s Compulsive Hoarding

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Hoarding is a disorder affecting nearly 2 million people in the United States, according to the Anxiety Disorders Center of Hartford Hospital in Connecticut. The compulsive hoarding behavior is a disorder where people are unable to part with possessions t o the point it becomes difficult to walk through a home.

Family members and friends are often the ones who notice the hoarding behavior in a loved one. Although a difficult subject to broach, good intentions of helping are commonly met with resistance.

Hoarding Signs & Symptoms

Hoarding symptoms may vary from one individual to another, as well as in varying degrees. The Mayo Clinic points to general observations of a potential hoarder’s home as containing work surfaces filled with excessive clutter. The ability to walk through a hoarder’s home may also be difficult due to piles and piles of belongings.

Generally, the following tell-tale signs will be present:

Cluttered living spaces

Inability to discard items

Acquiring needless items

Limited social contact

Difficulty managing daily activities

How to Help a Loved One Suffering from Hoarding

Coping With a Loved One's Compulsive Hoarding

While natural instinct may be to confront the hoarder, it will likely be met with defiance and ensuing arguments. It most cases the hoarder is a competent adult and therefore, he cannot be forced to change his or her ways.

The Mayo Clinic notes hoarding may begin in small ways early in a hoarder’s life. By middle age, the hoarder has accumulated a large number of possessions, and it’s this time that the condition becomes noticeable to friends and family. Unfortunately, the hoarder is usually firmly established in the hoarding behavior, thereby making it more difficult to treat.

When to Seek Professional Guidance for a Hoarder

Dr. David F. Tollin PhD. from the Anxiety Disorder Center at Hartford Hospital suggests approaching the hoarder with empathy in a non-argumentative discussion. Dr. Tollin also suggests questioning the hoarder on his or her behaviors and how it fits in with his or her daily and long-term goals.

Ultimately, severe cases of hoarding will require professional treatment. The Mayo Clinic suggests consulting with a doctor or mental health care provider for advice. If the hoarder’s personal welfare appears in jeopardy, immediate action should be taken to contact the appropriate local police, fire, public health or animal welfare agencies.

Overcoming hoarding can be difficult and in many cases it never fully is resolved. Identifying hoarding symptoms and signs in loved ones can be easy, but helping them understand their behavior can be problematic. In most cases, seeking professional treatment will be necessary and in severe cases it may be necessary to contact local authorities.

About the Author

- I am an internet marketing expert with an experience of 8 years.My hobbies are SEO,Content services and reading ebooks.I am founder of SRJ News andTech Preview.

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