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Compulsive Hoarding

Everybody accumulates stuff, and many of us have cluttered closets and drawers. But when seemingly useless possessions and even rotten food pile up, blocking exits and filling beds, sofas, sinks and bathtubs, it's evidence of a psychiatric condition called compulsive hoarding.

Compulsive hoarding is a widespread psychological disorder characterized by a number of different types of behavior. The biggest behavior that is associated with this disorder is the inability to throw away any thing in ones life. The other type of behavior associated with compulsive hoarding is the person who actively seeks out new possessions rather than hold onto their own belongings. It is recommended that anyone who has a compulsive hoarding problem should seek professional help for their problem.

Warning Signs of Hoarding

Hoarding is not limited to any age, race, gender or nationality. Hoarding behavior can begin early in life but is more prevalent in older adults. Hoarders can be of any educational or socio-economic level. They are unaware that their living circumstances pose a danger to themselves and to others. They are unable to change unsafe conditions on their own.

•Extreme collection and storage of items in the home and in the yard.
•Accumulation of combustible materials (newspapers, magazines and rubbish).
•Blocked exits (doors/windows).
•Narrow pathways in the home.
•Rat and/or insect infestations.
•Rotting food and/or used food containers.
•Human and/or animal waste.
•Long-term neglect of home maintenance.
•Non-working utilities, such as heat, running water, sewer and refrigeration.

Helping The Hoarder

How can family members and friends help a hoarder? As tempting as it may be, experts say forcibly cleaning out a hoarder's home is bound to backfire-and in some cases, cause severe psychological trauma. Hoarders tend to feel violated and simply repeat the process in a new location. "Shaming a person is never the answer," says Deb Stanley, a professional organizer in Clinton Township, Mich., who is also training to become a mental-health counselor. Instead, experts counsel patience and understanding, and letting the hoarder make his or her own decisions as much as possible.

One option is to hire a professional organizer, particularly one experienced with compulsive hoarding. The Web site of the National Study Group on Chronic Disorganization has a list of organizers who have had training. Ideally, they can help the hoarder learn to prioritize the possessions and, even if an eviction or health citation is imminent, they still will often give the client as much say as possible over their things.

We Can Help

Are you being consumed by junk and can not decide what to keep and what to throw away?

Do you know someone who has extreme clutter and is prevented from enjoying a higher quality of life? We can help. We come in to sort, bag, load and haul away the rubbish. After years of accumulation, it may be a large and overwhelming job for an individual or even a family to manage. Our understanding and patient staff are equipped with the tools and experience to effectively help sort through and get rid of unnecessary clutter. We deal with all types of situations professionally and efficiently on a daily basis.

Help someone use The Junk Pros as a vehicle on the road to a better quality of life. As a member of the National Association of Professional Organizers (NAPO) we work closely with professional organizers, as a team we understand the difficult situation that hoarding presents.

We make rubbish and junk removal easy for you. Also, we work hand in hand with our sister company, Omega Cleaning, which specializes in heavy duty residential cleaning. We can help in stopping health and fire violations and eviction.