Are you one of those people who keeps everything? Don’t you throw anything away because you think you might need it at some point in your life?

A hoarding person is one who keeps all kinds of things and has a hard time getting rid of them because they think they can be repaired, used for something or simply because they generate a memory and they believe that without that you detract from an important memory. For them, throwing them away is very difficult, so much so that they can become altered in such a way, even modifying their behavior towards others.

It is defined as “compulsive hoarding syndrome, compulsive hoarding syndrome, as a psychological disorder characterized by the tendency to accumulate articles or objects excessively in reference to socially accepted amounts and the inability to get rid of them, even if the objects they are worthless, dangerous or unhealthy. This compulsive hoarding can affect mobility in the home and interferes with basic activities such as cooking, cleaning, resting, sleeping, and using toilet facilities and social relationships.

The syndrome represents an excessive attachment, reaching the point that they get upset if others touch their things, they are distressed by the idea of ​​discarding or separating from objects, they feel the need to save or rescue them, even presenting physical symptoms if someone messes with their things. The person who suffers from this disorder experiences anguish and anxiety at the idea of ​​getting rid of things and they continue to accumulate excessively, regardless of their real or sentimental value.

Dr. Sanjaya Saxena, director of the Obsessive-Compulsive Disorders program at the University of California at San Diego, maintains that compulsive hoarding in advanced cases can lead the patient to live in totally unhealthy conditions, including infestation with pests such as rodents and cockroaches, getting injured by landing on sharp objects and other imminent health and safety hazards, including causing fires or cave-ins. It may not return what causes social friction, in more extreme cases the possessive impulse can lead to stealing objects (Kleptomania).

Characteristics:

Compulsive hoarding is a pathology, a mental disorder that modifies people’s behavior causing them to accumulate any type of thing obsessively.

Those who suffer from it suffer from excess anxiety, depressive tendencies or problems socializing. We will give a general overview of the nature of this complex syndrome to learn about some of its causes, symptoms and consequences.

-Compulsive hoarders are characterized by feeling a strong difficulty when it comes to getting rid of material objects. They are people very attached to their home and do not tolerate changes very well, it is difficult for them to accept them.

-The compulsive hoarder gives value to the objects he accumulates. They create emotional bonds with objects and material detachment causes them anguish, pain and even remorse.

-They are aware that the objects they accumulate are useless or that they are already in poor condition, they are aware that they can already be considered garbage, but they still want to keep them, attributing a value to them.

-The seriousness of this disorder lies in the fact that the people who suffer from it most of the time do not see it as a problem, which makes its treatment extremely difficult.

There are several levels of accumulation:

Level One (Type 1): the accumulation is not excessive, the home is clean, habitable. There may be occasional pet odors, and there may be some evidence of pest or ant invasion. All the ways of entering and exiting the house such as doors and stairs of the house are accessible. Level Two (Type 2): there are appliances that no longer work, the disorder and accumulation extends to two or more rooms in the house; Some unpleasant odors are already present as there is less cleaning, mold (light to medium) is seen in kitchens and bathrooms, and food preparation surfaces are slightly dirty. There are also odors coming from pets, and evidence of feces and urine. Level Three (Type 3): Accumulation extends from floor to ceiling, with outdoor areas already affected. The hygiene of pets has been neglected even more, animal feces and urine are scattered inside the house. The area for food preparation is very dirty and with piles of garbage. There are unpleasant odors throughout the house, there is dust everywhere, dirty sheets. Clutter already blocks access points such as windows or doors, certain rooms in the house are no longer usable. Level Four (Type 4): Accumulation causes structural damage such as leaking or broken windows, unusable bathrooms. Pest infestations are already evident. There is already food in states of decomposition, in the kitchen there are no longer clean utensils in it. Mold and mildew are already invading more places in various parts of the house. There are (several) pets in poor hygienic conditions. Level Five (Type 5): Chaos. The accumulator already lives in a place without basic services, there may even be human feces, pets represent a health hazard. There are cases in which family members go to live elsewhere because there is no longer room for them.

Symptoms and behavior of accumulators.

-They keep useless objects or of little economic value, such as catalogs, old newspapers, and things that they have received for free.

-Keep books, reading materials such as information brochures, video tapes, notebooks. -Keep kitchen utensils that are in poor condition, that are already unusable.

-In the face of any suggestion about throwing away any type of material, they allege that it could be reused, recycled or “used for crafts”

-They keep clothes in poor condition, that no longer fit them in terms of size and that they can no longer use or that they could give away

-They refuse to throw away broken things because they consider that they can be repaired.

-They maintain that empty plastic bottles, glass, cans, waste paper are recyclable but do not give them the corresponding destination for recycling

-Keep large amounts of food and expired perishables

-They not only keep old things but also large amounts of new items, unused clothes and clothes with labels

-They buy, even steal and collect objects even from the street just to have them.

-Your home becomes so cluttered to the point that some parts are inaccessible. For example, beds that cannot be slept on, kitchen countertops that cannot be used to prepare food, bathrooms with poor hygiene -They isolate themselves socially because they avoid visits from family and friends because the disorder embarrasses them and above all they do not want these Suggest changes to them, confronting family or friends due to disorder or accumulation.

We tend to call this type of person dirty or lazy or messy, but it goes beyond that because this characteristic disorder is the result of the disorder, it is a reflection of chaos and speaks of how they feel emotionally.

Behind this condition is an inability to let go of things, people or relationships, the fact of filling an emotional void or the attempt to compensate for something is hidden.

These people need psychological help to change or improve their quality of life, so it is essential to seek professional help if you are experiencing a situation like this or if you know someone who suffers from it.

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