Hoarding Misconceptions Abound

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Published January 20, 2015. Updated October 28, 2020.

Thanks to numerous documentaries, reality shows, and recent discussions in the media, hoarding remains a fascinating and curious affliction. However, such fascination does not always lend itself to understanding, which can contribute to an abundance of misconceptions concerning the illness. This post examines one of the most common myths surrounding hoarding disorder, and attempts to provide a general understanding of the medical causes that underlie the behavior. To learn more about hoarding and hoarding cleanup in general visit our hoarding cleanup services webpage.c.

Hoarders Are Not Merely Lazy or Slovenly

One of the most common myths surrounding hoarders has to do with poor character traits ascribed by those who lack a true understanding of the mental illness. Accordingly, many claim that hoarders are simply lazy or slovenly, which results in the failure to keep a home intact. But this is simply not true.

In fact, when studying the brain activity of hoarders and non-hoarders, there are distinct differences present. Studies have shown that hoarders experience deficiencies in certain areas, including spatial orientation and problem-solving. This can result in great turmoil and confusion when it comes to discarding items, increasing the amount of unnecessary belongings within one’s home.

Underlying Mental Illness Can Cause Hoarding Behaviors

Because hoarding behaviors are most often associated with underlying mental illness, thorough hoarding cleanup offers only a temporary solution. Trauma and depression frequently contribute to such behaviors, with those afflicted attempting to fill some void in their lives through the accumulation of material goods.

Therefore, hoarders must undergo therapy in order to make a full recovery. This is particularly important in cases where post-traumatic stress disorder is a factor. Without appropriate treatment, the hoarding cycle will continue to occur, even after cleaning has taken place. This can be frustrating and heartbreaking for the hoarders themselves and for concerned loved ones.

Professional Hoarding Cleanup


Hoarding cleanup presents complex health and safety hazards. Our team of hoarding cleanup experts adhere to OSHA’s bloodborne pathogen regulations and practice universal precautions to protect our employees and customers. Our science-based process ensures that we contain the affected areas to prevent cross-contamination, remove all traces of biological materials, disinfect and deodorize, and deploy our ATP test to confirm that the affected areas are free of pathogens. ATP testing is how we quantify our attention to detail. If you ever find yourself in a situation where you need crime scene cleanup or biohazard remediation, Aftermath will get the job done correctly. It’s a guarantee we can test.

Aftermath Can Help Make Your Home Livable Once Again

Though it is often misunderstood, hoarding remains a serious condition that can impact the emotional and physical health of the afflicted, as well as others who live in the household. Filth and clutter within a home can lead to serious illness, including respiratory problems and contagious diseases. Fortunately, Aftermath Services’ hoarding cleanup technicians are experienced at handling the most overwhelming hoarding cleanup situations. Don’t let hoarding misconceptions stop you from assisting loved ones who may suffer from this illness. If you find yourself in need, call in the professionals. Aftermath Services is fully insured and our team has undergone rigorous training to perform hoarding cleanup safely and effectively. In addition, Aftermath Services has an A+ BBB rating, is a member of ISSA and OSHA compliant. 

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