Often an embarrassing situation for the owner or occupier. Linked Cleaning Services will work swiftly and discretely to remedy the situation and restore the property to a liveable home.
Hoarders are people who lose the desire to throw away unneeded items because of a feeling of attachment to these items. Compulsive hoarders will equate certain, usually mundane, objects to their own personal identity or even give them certain human characteristics. Hoarding is different from Obsessive Compulsive Disorder because their thoughts about hoarding are in their natural stream of thought, not unwanted or distressed thoughts that people with OCD feel.
In severe cases, houses belonging to such people may become a fire hazard (due to blocked exits and stacked papers) or a health hazard (due to vermin infestation, excreta and detritus from excessive pets, hoarded food and garbage or the risk of stacks of items collapsing on the occupants and blocking exit routes).
According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition, the symptoms for hoarding disorder include:
A. Persistent difficulty discarding or parting with possessions, regardless of their actual value.
B. This difficulty is due to a perceived need to save the items and to distress associated with discarding them.
C. The difficulty discarding possessions results in the accumulation of possessions that congest and clutter active living areas and substantially compromises their intended use. If living areas are uncluttered, it is only because of the interventions of third parties (e.g., family members, cleaners, authorities).
D. The hoarding causes clinically significant distress or impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning (including maintaining a safe environment for self and others).
E. The hoarding is not attributable to another medical condition (e.g., brain injury, cerebrovascular disease, Prader-Will syndrome).
F. The hoarding is not better explained by the symptoms of another mental disorders (e.g., obsessions in obsessive-compulsive disorder, decreased energy in major depressive disorder, delusions in schizophrenia or another psychotic disorder, cognitive deficits in major neurocognitive disorder, restricted interests in autism spectrum disorder).
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Listed below are possible symptoms hoarders may experience:
1. They hold onto a large number of items that most people would consider useless or worthless, such as:
* Junk mail, old catalogs and newspapers.
* Worn out cooking equipment.
* Things that might be useful for making crafts.
* Clothes that “might” be worn one day.
* Broken things/trash.
* “Freebies” or other promotional products.
2. Their home is cluttered to the point where many parts are inaccessible and can no longer be used for intended purpose. For example:
* Beds that cannot be slept in.
* Kitchens that cannot be used for food preparation, refrigerators filled with rotting food, stove tops with combustibles (such as junk mail, as well as old food piled on top of burners).
* Tables, chairs or sofas that cannot be used for dining or sitting.
* Unsanitary bathrooms; piles of human or animal feces collected in areas of the home, giant bags of dirty diapers that have been hoarded for many years.
* Tubs, showers, and sinks are filled with items to the point where it can no longer be used for washing or bathing. Hoarders would thus possibly forgo bathing.
* Some hoard animals they cannot even marginally care for; dead pets cannibalized by other pets are often found under the heaps. Pets suffer due to lack of mobility.
3. Their clutter and mess is at a point where it can cause illness, distress, and impairment. As a result, they:
* Do not allow visitors in, such as family and friends or repair and maintenance professionals, because the clutter embarrasses them.
* Are reluctant or unable to return borrowed items.
* Steal due to the impulse of possession.
* Keep the shades drawn so that no one can look inside.
* Get into a lot of arguments with family members regarding the clutter.
* Are at risk of fire, falling, infestation or eviction.
* Often feeling depressed or anxious due to the clutter.