With all of the television shows that are devoted to showcasing hoarding and those who are struggling with this form of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), it can seem like this disorder is a form of entertainment and should not be taken seriously. The problem with reality television shows is that they can make light of a serious situation. Hoarding requires specific treatment that addresses the OCD and addiction elements of this disease.
Understanding Hoarding and Addiction
Hoarding is characterized by compulsive behaviors and difficulty discarding personal items. It can include the following actions and behaviors:
- Compulsive or impulsive shopping
- Compulsive searching for items to complete collections of hoarded items
- A firm refusal to reduce or discard anything including items that should otherwise be thrown out or recycled
While hoarding may be part of a larger obsessive-compulsive disorder, it can also relate to addiction. Addiction can take the form of an addiction to hoarding, or hoarding can co-occur with a substance abuse problem.
Treatment for Hoarding
When you treat hoarding, you need to treat the whole person. An integrated rehab facility offers help for compulsive hoarding in conjunction with treatment for any mental health issues or addiction recovery needs. After receiving integrated treatment the recovering individual will be in a much better position to maintain sobriety and positive mental health. Treatment can include such elements as the following:
- Individual therapy sessions
- Group therapy sessions
- Prescription medication
- Marriage or family counseling
Treatment for each person will vary. For a person who is both hoardings and addicted to drugs, it is important that a customized form of treatment is created. This is why it is important to find specialty rehab facilities that offer OCD treatment in conjunction with drug and alcohol treatment.
If your loved one is the person who is hoarding, remember that hoarding often goes hand-in-hand with denial, so it might prove difficult to convince your family member that they need OCD treatment. An intervention may be part of helping your loved one heal and find a stable and satisfying life.