How to Help a Hoarder

July 17th, 2013 by

Helping A Hoarder – Five Signs Of Hoarding

Address Our Mess project managers and technicians specialize in assisting hoarders with creating a happier, healthier living environment.  However, how can you tell if someone you know or love, or if even you yourself suffers from the hoarding condition?

Experts at Address Our Mess have answered that very common hoarding question by making available the “Five Early Warning Signs of Hoarding.”


This comprehensive visual guide was built to assist hoarders and their helpers alike in identifying some of the key clues in determining whether or not hoarding has overtaken someone’s life.  To be used in conjunction with other guides such as The Official Do’s and Don’ts Guide for Hoarders and 3 Decluttering Tips, this tool will help hoarders and helpers better understand the challenges and the desires of one another.

Hoarders will usually distance themselves from others as often as possible.  Every day tasks like going to work, grocery shopping, and attending special events will seem more obligatory than enjoyable.  An illusion of basic interaction can be maintained by taking part in daily activities.  However, when the routine is over, a hoarder will simply retreat back to their unlivable home.

A hoarder will regularly avoid meeting with anyone at their home.  They will also never invite anyone over for a visit or party.  Some hoarders will even strongly decline a request to visitors seeking to enter their living space. Helpers of hoarders should never force themselves into a hoarded home.  However, expressing the severe dangers of living in such deplorable conditions may be the key to unlocking the opportunity to help a hoarder find their way on the road to recovery.

Hoards develop when the ability to decipher which physical items hold value and which do not.  Every person has a unique reason as to why emotional connections are made with material objects.  For hoarders, emotional connections are made with every single item in their grasp.

A person’s living condition is not all that is affected by chronic indecisive behavior.  Careers can be ruined, savings can be squandered, and simple functionality like shopping and driving can be affected so much so that a person’s quality of life is hindered and diminished.  Calling on a hoarding cleaning service provider is the first step to ensuring that the condition does not get out of hand.

Being let into the world of a hoarder can be shocking and overwhelming.  However, being invited into the home translates into being called upon for help.  Hoarders will allow everyday living areas to completely lose their functionality.  Food is no longer prepared, cooked, or even stored in the kitchen.  Bedrooms are no longer slept in.  Living rooms are no longer lived in.  And bathrooms no longer function the way they are meant to.

Take this opportunity to strengthen the bond of trust that is vital to the success of hoarding recovery.  With the meteoric rise in hoarding cases across the US and in the mainstream media, it would be very easy to confuse someone’s call for help with a desperate attempt at attracting attention.

If a hoarder is asking for help or for someone to confide in, the opportunity must be seized immediately in order to effectively start the hoarding recovery process.  Hoarding conditions can range from small amounts of clutter to massive hoards of garbage, animals, and biohazards.  Use the opportunity wisely and gain the trust of your friend or loved one who is asking for your help.

For more information on hoarding cleanup services, or answers to many hoarding questions please call us or fill out our contact form below.

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