Home & Living

The Difference Between Hoarding And Having A 'Messy Home'

It's more than you may realize.

You may live in a messier home than most people. You may keep piles of old receipts, struggle to clean out kitchen cabinets or have a shoe closet that's a bit more crowded than it should be. You may even casually refer to yourself as a "hoarder" because of these habits.

Actually, hoarding is a psychiatric disorder. In the video above, hoarding expert Cory Chalmers describes what makes hoarding different from other forms of collecting or messiness.

"The easiest way [to] define it is when you lose functionality in rooms," Chalmers says. "If you can't sleep in your bed, cook in your kitchen, sit at a dining room table... you've lost functionality."

Check out the video above for more signs that simple disorganization might be something more.

If you or someone you know thinks you might be suffering from hoarding disorder, reach out to your doctor or mental health professional for help. To find a list of providers in your area, visit the International OCD Foundation’s website for a directory, as well as an online help forums and resources on how to talk to loved ones.

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