Extreme hoarding an illness, says expert

Posted on April 12, 2014

EXTREME hoarding is an illness that needs to be treated carefully, according to a mental health expert.

Clinical psychologist Catherine Madigan says people who hoard have often experienced trauma and invest otherwise useless items with great personal value.

"Extreme hoarding is definitely an illness," Ms Madigan told AAP.

She said when hoarding is tied to an existing mental illness, the sudden removal of any heap could have "devastating" consequences.

"Just to come in and chuck everything out, it's pretty brutal," she said.

Instead, people who hoard should seek out support groups that encourage members to give away a small collection of items every week, she advised.

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Source material from Herald Sun

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