How do you know if someone needs therapy for hoarding?
The person with a hoarding disorder
has a strong aversion to throwing away useless items—expired coupons, old magazines, pamphlets, and receipts. The person also has a hard time organizing possessions. They may not trust others and think that they will need the items at another time. Generally, their home is disorganized, congested, and unlivable.
Can hoarding go away without treatment?
Hoarding is related to obsessive-compulsive disorder
and some 25 percent of people who suffer from OCD also hoard. Like OCD, hoarding does not magically disappear or fix itself. Also like OCD, hoarding is chronic. It is possible but not likely that extreme hoarding will abate on its own.
Does therapy work for hoarding? Psychotherapy can effectively manage hoarding disorder. The individual may need to attend many sessions over an extended period of time, but most important is the person’s motivation to stick with their treatment plan. Unless the hoarder is committed to improving their mental health, no therapy regimen will work.
How do you get a hoarder into treatment? A person who hoards often does not realize they have a problem. People around them may be inclined to clear out their clutter for them, but this only distresses the individual. It can be helpful to accompany the hoarder when they are scheduled to see their physician. Seeing the person’s medical provider is the first step in managing the problem. This will include the help of a mental health professional familiar with obsessive-compulsive disorder and hoarding.