Are You or Someone You Know
“Buried in Treasures” (Hoarding)?
By Jessica Novello, MS, RN, CDP, May 12, 2023
Did you know that hoarding behaviors are more common among adults over 60 years of age and among persons with anxiety and depression? Behaviors may be triggered by past experiences or a recent loss. There is an overall prevalence of hoarding disorder in 2.6% in the population. This means that most people may know a person affected by hoarding disorder or may be affected themselves. Since hoarding behaviors have a mental health aspect (it is a psychological condition) and an environmental/health safety aspect (the home often becomes unsafe or hazardous)- this condition can feel very overwhelming and involves a cautious, respectful, and diligent team approach for proper treatment. There is education, resources, and support if you or someone you love is “buried in treasures”*.
*The term “buried in treasures” comes from a book and workshop series on hoarding. I prefer this terminology as it feels less stigmatizing than “hoarder”. It is important to remember that a person affected by hoarding disorder is not just a “hoarder”- they are often a parent, sibling, friend, or valued community member who has been affected by a serious behavioral condition. A more sensitive way to refer to the person and condition would be a “person affected by hoarding disorder”, not a “hoarder”. It is important to remember that regardless of what we are going through, we are people first and not classified by a mental heath diagnosis alone.
Hoarding is a serious mental health condition….
Article submitted to MSRN by Jessica Novello, MS, RN, CDP, MSRN Member