Compulsive hoarding syndrome is a condition that affects about 1.2 million people in the United States. It accompanies obsessive-compulsive disorder in 25 to 40 percent of the diagnosed cases. One in three people with obsessive-compulsive disorder has hoarding tendencies.
Hoarding affects some people more severely than others. People with severe cases stack all sort of items in their living spaces and live in cramped conditions. The clutter invariably leads to unsanitary and unhygienic living conditions as well.
Hoarding is also distinguishable by type of items hoarded. Some people hoard food, old newspapers and junk mail, others hoard trash, and still others hoard animals without taking proper care of them.
What causes compulsive hoarding?
Apparent causes of hoarding are laziness, weakness of character, and disorganization, but such conditions are not the underlying causes. Research has not yet substantiated the exact causes of hoarding, but nevertheless biological conditions, brain abnormalities, and genetics are major possible causes.