A cleanup service is just one step in the process of helping someone affected by hoarding.
To someone unfamiliar with hoarding disorder, the thought of cleaning up a hoarder house may seem simple. But this is far from accurate. Hoarding cleanup can pose several health threats, from bacteria growth to animal feces and rodent infestation. By hiring a hoarding cleanup service, you can protect yourself and your loved ones from these health hazards and trust that the job is handled thoroughly, professionally, and discreetly.
Professional Hoarding Cleanup Services In Maryland
According to The American Psychiatric Association, hoarding disorder occurs in an estimated 2-5% of the population and can severely hinder a person’s social and occupational functioning. Unfortunately, when it comes to cleaning up the mess, most compulsive hoarders are unable to do it on their own.
What is Hoarding?
Hoarding is a psychological condition that causes people to obsessively collect items and makes it difficult for a person to part with things once they are acquired. Big deal, you may be thinking. I could never get rid of my antique model car collection. Does that make me a hoarder? Well, no.
Hoarding is different from collecting. Collectors may have 1 or 2 things that they collect – model cars, porcelain dolls, rare books – and the collector likely keeps their collection clean, organized, and proudly displayed. A person with hoarding disorder, however, “collects” common items such as newspapers, plastic bags, old clothing, and plastic containers (things that most of us would deem worthless) and considers them extremely difficult to part with.
Hoarding Clean Up: Worst Case Scenario
Hoarding disorder comes with a long list of risks: fire and safety hazards, unsanitary living situations, possible eviction and homelessness, among others. One risk that is rarely thought about, however, is the risk of unattended death.
The risk of unattended death can be especially high for senior citizens with hoarding disorder. Senior citizens with hoarding disorder often live alone, isolate themselves, and have declining health. They are at risk of passing away and not being found for days, weeks, or sometimes even months.
Cleaning up a hoarding site where there has been an unattended death
The airborne bacteria that a body releases after death can be extremely hazardous and can negatively affect the safety and well being of future occupants if the home is not properly restored. This paired with the mounds of hoarding materials left at a scene, is often too overwhelming – not to mention unsafe – for families to clean up on their own. We cannot express enough how understanding and discreet we are when it comes to helping with hoarding clean up.