Recently, hoarding has received widespread media attention. People with compulsive hoarding disorder keep things that stir both awe and disgust. Laughter is a common response, but it’s hard not feeling sympathetic too. We’ve all experienced moments where we’ve hung onto an object that isn’t something we really need. For seniors, especially seniors who don’t have many visitors, hoarding might not be a compulsive disorder, but it’s still unsafe.
Hoarding in dark spaces
The less visitors someone receives, the more likely they will be to hoard. Compulsive hoarding is very closely related to obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD). If you were to see it, compulsive hoarding would be immediately recognizable. Similarly, hoarding without the compulsive aspect is less dramatic, but still easy to recognize. The catch is that it requires a visit and helping hands to clean.
As we grow older, we’ll naturally end up with more stuff unless we intentionally get rid of it. If you’ve cleaned out a garage, you know that it can be physically taxing. Sometimes, getting rid of stuff is just too demanding. Other times, loneliness and emotional isolation provide a better explanation for hoarding.
Physical abilities diminish, kids move out of town, loved ones die and all that’s left is the stuff that has built up over the years. Depression can set in and stir a wide range of seemingly irrational behaviors, but it can all change with a simple visit.
Visiting our beloved collectors
Caring for seniors isn’t always easy. Often, the burden of care rests on one child’s shoulders and sometimes, no one is there to help at all. If you need assistance caring for a loved one, or suspect you might know someone who is hoarding, we can help.
In-home caregivers provide a wide range of services from cooking to cleaning, even though that isn’t their primary focus. Hanging onto objects with sentimental value goes from normal to dysfunctional when it begins to affect someone’s quality of life. By creating open channels of communication and frequently visiting, a home can be cleared gradually. We can hang onto the things that truly matter and improve a seniors quality of life.