Hoarding is a dangerous affliction that can threaten the welfare of those you care about. A hoarder is someone who has a difficult time throwing objects away, even when they have little or no value. This can grow to include the neglect of household upkeep and personal hygiene. The good news is that help is available for this debilitating mental condition. Here are some tips for dealing with hoarding.
Stop Clutter Creation
The first step in reversing the effects of hoarding is limiting the creation of new clutter. Starting small with throwing away waste and putting items away after use sounds simple, but it can go a long way in reversing the trend. From there, slowly work toward clearing the debris around the home.
The One-Year Rule
It is important to declutter your home. Aside from being a fire hazard, there is also the possibility of a fungus having invaded the area. One of the easiest ways to determine what you should keep or throw away is to remember the one-year rule. This rule states you should discard anything in your home that you haven’t used within the past year. This includes old clothes, furniture, newspapers, and anything else lying around.
Snail Mail and E-Mails
Many people have a rule when it comes to the mail: only handle it once. While there are obvious exceptions to this rule, this can help keep your home and your email inbox organized. Save important documents but remember that it is ok to throw things away after they have served their purpose.
It can be scary to reach out to others when we are in need. But that is exactly why having a support network of friends and family is so great. If you are in a hoarding situation and feeling overwhelmed, ask for help from those around you. They are your best resource for getting your life back under control.
It is also important to remember that these tips for dealing with hoarding will be useless if the hoarder isn’t willing to seek treatment for their condition. Professional help is available, providing support for anyone struggling with this affliction. Experts will often work with patients to create an individualized plan for dealing with their hoarding compulsion and any other underlying medical conditions.