When it comes to waste accumulation and hoarding, there are many issues which can affect the overall well being of any individual living in the space. In this article, we will be breaking down exactly what waste accumulation is, the dangers that are associated with hoarding disorder and how our team of compassionate experts can help if you have a loved one in a similar situation.
What is Waste Accumulation?
Waste accumulation and hoarding can be two distinct yet related issues that both have serious consequences. When we speak about waste accumulation, we are referring to an excessive amount of items that are present in one’s living space – whether that be household items, general rubbish or even hazardous materials.
Waste accumulation can happen for many reasons and can be a recognisable trait of the psychological disorder, hoarding. According to the NHS website, a hoarding disorder is defined as ‘ someone acquiring an excessive number of items and storing them in a chaotic manner, usually resulting in unmanageable amounts of clutter.”
The act of hoarding can be a symptom of a much larger condition or problem, and it’s vital that these circumstances are treated with the utmost care and respect. Whilst this can present a delicate situation, waste accumulation and hoarding can create a potentially dangerous environment if not handled properly.
The Dangers Involved With Waste Accumulation
One of the main problems with accumulated waste is the health problems it can cause over a long period of time. For instance, in these hoarding situations, it’s not uncommon to find rooting food waste. This can attract pests and even cause diseases. Not to mention, decaying food can make the perfect conditions for mould to grow. This can lead to respiratory issues in the long term.
Safety Risks & Concerns
Hoarding can be characterised as an excessive amount of clutter or waste – which can in turn, create many safety risks and concerns. Firstly, there are the physical hazards such as tripping or falling. With so many items taking up a living space, it can make it all the more tricky to move around. This can mean that movement becomes limited, and thus, the probability of an accident taking place is increased.
Speaking of accidents, if something more serious was to happen, then with a clutter-filled environment it would be more difficult to escape your surroundings. Hoarding can create extreme fire hazards and make it difficult for first responders to access a residence in an emergency. Keeping your house clear and hazard-free ensures both yours and your families safety.
Mental Health Impact
As well as the physical impact, living in an unorganised space can also affect your mental health massively. The hoarding disorder can also be associated with other anxiety-based illnesses, such as depression and OCD. Whilst these underlying psychological factors need to be addressed for effective treatment by a mental health specialist, a messy environment will also exacerbate these negative emotions.
How To Help a Hoarder
Before approaching a loved one about their potential hoarding disorder, it’s a great idea to get as much information as possible. By educating yourself first, it can help you to make more informed decisions about how to move forward and further help your loved one. Researching into hoarding can also help reduce the stigma around this disorder and increase the general understanding of these issues.
Finding Professional Help
One of the most common ways forward for hoarders is to go speak to a mental health professional or therapist. Most therapists would recommend CBT or cognitive-behavioural therapy or a specialised hoarding-specific treatment to help combat these urges. If someone in your immediate life suffers from hoarding disorder, you can support them by gently suggesting they seek help. This can be easier said than done but by offering emotional support and creating a non-judgemental environment, you may be able to make some headway with your loved one.
Hiring Clearance Services
Rather than attempting to clean and organise your loved one’s space by yourself, it can be a great idea to hire professional clearance services which can help remove any clutter or waste safely. Removing all items from an overly crowded space can be a daunting task, meaning that both you and your loved ones may need support to tackle it. Hoarding can be a delicate matter, so employing a team which is both friendly and compassionate is one of the best ways forward.
As well as the physical dangers of attempting to clear the space yourself, it can also be emotionally taxing for all involved. By hiring professional clearance services you can not only remove any heavy lifting or physical labour from your plate, you will also be able to put your energy back into supporting the hoarder during this potentially difficult time.
House Clearance Surrey – How We Can Help You
Here at Greenleaf Clearance, we truly understand that hoarding disorder is a complex mental health condition. As well as being an empathetic team of professionals, we know that hoarding is not just about decluttering the physical space, but also offering addressing the emotional elements that may come with this process. With the support of us, and their loved ones, we can help individuals suffering with hoarding disorder achieve a much safer and healthier living situation. If you have any questions or would like to speak to one of our team about how our clearance services can help, feel free to contact us on 0808 164 8226.