Hoarding, which is the excessive accumulation of items and the inability to discard them, can be managed. The disorder alone cannot be treated. The symptoms however can be dealt with effectively. Hoarding treatment may vary depending on the status of the patient. Upon assessment, a hoarding treatment plan may be formed to suit the needs of each hoarder.
Hoarding treatment consists of a various therapies, the most common of which are psychotherapy and medications. The most common form of psychotherapy is cognitive-behavioral therapy. In this particular form of hoarding treatment the patient is allowed to explore their feelings as to why they feel obliged to acquire things.
One of the goals of the treatment is that they would be able to organize and categorize items so that they will be able to know which ones to discard and gain better decision-making skills in the process. They will also learn how to clear the clutter in their home and practice relaxation skills. During the course of therapy, they will also be encouraged to constantly attend group or individual treatment to keep up and continue healthy practices.
Medications are also recommended as a part of the hoarding treatment and the best ways to use medications in the treatment of hoarding however are still undergoing research. The most commonly used medications are antidepressants called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors. Research studies show that some people with compulsive hoarding respond to these types of medications, however, a lot of them do not. Successful hoarding treatment usually includes both medication and psychotherapy to alter hoarding behaviors.
Hoarding treatment therapy could take years. This is a difficult time for the patients as it will take a lot of adjustments since they are used to their habits and see nothing wrong with them. They will need support and encouragement especially from family members and loved ones.
Most people do not think there is anything wrong with their habits. This is one of the reasons why hoarding can be difficult to treat. Before things get worse, modify and stick to a healthy lifestyle. Attend to your personal hygiene and make sure you get proper nutrition. Try to go out and see family and friends as hoarding can make you feel isolated and lonely. Focus on your tasks and goals. If you are experiencing difficulties in moving around your house, clean your surroundings and organize possessions before somebody gets hurt. If you feel burdened by the number of items you have, you can ask a friend to come over and help you reorganize your home.
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