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Oct 11, 2016

Hoarding is a Bigger Problem than Clearing Out Junk

With reality television shows like “Hoarders” and “Hoarding: Buried Alive,” people are becoming aware of not only the existence of hoarders, but the process of clearing out their overstuffed homes. The shows are helpful because they bring to light the fact that hoarding is a serious risk to health and property.

Even though it may seem as if you can simply go into the home and remove the clutter, it is not that easy. This is a problem that goes far beyond the label of “Pack Rat;” the problem generally stems from what is known as a “hoarding disorder.”

Defined by the Mayo Clinic, hoarding disorder is a persistent difficulty discarding or parting with possessions because of a perceived need to save them, regardless of their actual value. A person with this disorder experiences distress at the thought of getting rid of the items. It may be a disorder on its own, or can be combined with other disorders such as attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), obsessive-compulsive personality disorder (OCPD), or depression.

When clearing out a hoarding situation, empathy and compassion are required. Sometimes, a professional counselor is involved, or family members step in to help. At other times, the home must be cleared to avoid legal actions or eviction. We have worked with city and county officials in this capacity as well.

Most items hoarded have little or no monetary value and include excessive clutter, books, food, newspapers, craft items, homewares, trash, files and papers, or even animals. It accumulates until is no longer possible to live in the home or use it in a normal capacity.

123JUNK Treats Hoarders with the Dignity They Deserve

The team at 123JUNK is trained to work with hoarding situations and will provide courteous and considerate service to avoid any shame or embarrassment. You and your loved ones will be treated with dignity as we work together to remedy the problem. We can also assist by providing the names of professional organizers we have worked with.

If you need help or know of someone who may be at risk in their home in Northern Virginia, Washington D.C. or Maryland, call 123JUNK. We will sort the treasures from the junk, recycle them back into the community through our charity partners, and dispose of the rest.

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