By looking at the symptoms of hoarding and what it makes out of people, it is imperative to consider it a disorder since it goes against common behavior orientations and what is expected from individuals.
The question on whether hoarding should be regarded as a disorder is a clear indication that it is a medical condition worth looking into. Perhaps it is because of the characteristics it exhibits and the impacts it has on the individuals suffering from it. Hoarding can be defined as that condition or a type of behavior whereby an individual has a tendency of obtaining possession of a material matter and failing to dispose of it off even when it has become worthless and obsolete. Sometimes individuals with this condition may tend to congest the places they live with items to an extent that they lack space for themselves. Furthermore, such individuals are generally impaired in their work and social life because they tend to keep issues to themselves most of the time (Maj et al 27).
This behavior referred to as hoarding is borrowed from a business concept whereby businessmen keep commodities out of the market by holding them in anticipation for better and higher prices which will mean more profits. In the medical field, this condition is directly related to obsessive compulsive behavior in which an individual develops an intense craving for or to carry out a task. When it comes to the behavioral context it is at times thought that relatives or rather parents of individuals suffering from this disorder. Some were once victims of severe cases of stress or depression and they tend to keep it to themselves most of the time (Durand and Barlow 4).
This disorder usually begins in childhood but may remain unnoticed until later stages in life. It is right to call it a disorder because of the implications it has on both the individuals and those around them. Some people consider the affected individuals as unbecoming and might even conclude them as being mad. But then it raises more questions than answers when one starts keeping most things that he or she does not need. It is quite abnormal when someone clutters his or her room to the extent that there is no more space. It is even absurd when one is distressed in work and social life (Durand and Barlow 479).
Hoarding should be considered a disorder more so since we understand very well that a disorder is a psychological condition which is in opposition to the normal or expected behavior of average individuals.
However, some people tend to suggest that it is not a disorder since it has a positive side to it that makes it look normal. People say that it helps in maintaining and keeping one's important possessions. They claim that possessive individuals do not like wasting resources and the properties they own. That even though they buy a new item, they will still keep the old one and not arbitrarily rid it off. When we objectively analyze this, we note that it is a beyond normal obsession. There are cases where some individuals keep receipts of the petty purchases they made ages ago. Such is inconsequential as it counts to nothing. New things should replace the old ones to maintain the same space.
There is also a claim that hoarding is a survival skill. This may come about because many things which one may consider as waste may be brought back to usefulness. For instance, empty tins may be kept and later even used as flower vases. Sometimes even old blankets and clothes may in the future be useful to use as cleaning rags. This should be considered normal and as a way of maintaining use of items by recycling. But then others do not recognize this up to the point where several useless items are stuffed in homes apart from them being an eyesore. Some items when overstuffed in dwelling places may cause injuries in case someone trips on them and fall. This makes keeping them not worth the effort because of the negative effects they may have (Andrews 341).
It is also asserted that people who hoard are good thrifts. It is so since such people may safely keep a lot of money for a long time. They are not spendthrifts and often have that extra penny for a future day. This is a normal practice. It goes overboard when some people live as misers and adopt a miserable lifestyle while they have stuffed a lot of money in banks or under the mattresses. There are also cases where some people have died as great papers only for others to later realize that they had millions of dollars in savings accounts. This is money that would have helped them a great deal and even bettered their lives. This habit of saving coupled by hoarding defeats logic because in as much as one is saving; there is a need to live a better and enjoyable life for oneself and those around us.
This now brings me to my argument. Looking at these conditions we would rightly call it a disorder. It can be considered a symptom for a more serious complication. Being a disorder, it carries with it lots of disadvantages some of which are so adverse to both the individuals in question and those around them. This condition leads to a clustering of living spaces by items that are no longer useful and depleted. This tends to hinder movement and intended use for such spaces. Furthermore, apart from the items overstuffing the places people dwell in, they may be harmful as they may lead to accidents. The rooms look stuffy and are dirty. Therefore people like that need counseling and even medical attention since hoarding is an obsession which they guard with great passion and still do not care about the impacts it has on them and their environments.
This condition is a disorder since it has a potential to transform to greater effects. Some are habits are shameful and excessive that may transform into a kleptomaniac. This is a situation whereby one becomes a thief and keeps stealing things to satisfy his whims of keeping things. In such a situation, only one has to spot something that he likes or feels like having. Because of immense obsession, he or she struggles to have it even though it means stealing it from whoever has it. This should be considered a disorder since an individual is not in control of what happens to him or her. Such an individual may even find himself behind bars and may even end up in difficult situations because of some forces that are beyond them which they cannot control. In this case, such people need medical or rather psychiatric guidance and medication to avoid extreme conditions.
Hoarding can further be considered a disorder because of the social implication that it has on both the individuals and those around them. You realize that most of the time the affected people tend to be egocentric and unresponsive to others. This is an antisocial behavior because it is an impediment to a proper work and social life. This can further be observed instances where individuals like keeping books some of which they do not even need or have already read. Some may keep these books and do not lend them to others for more important studies (Hatton and Kantona 41).
In workplaces, such people don not share with the rest even in light hearted moments. They simply mind their own business. This hurts relationships since communication is important in social places. Good relationships are vital as no man is an island. We need each other to maintain emphatic relations. In normal circumstances, people need to open up to each other. When it comes to a point whereby others only need to keep to themselves, do things their way and in their own freewill without company, it is an alarm and such an individual needs immediate medical attention.
It is correct to justify that hoarding, as a condition, is a disorder since an individual suffering from it behaves in ways that are not conventional. An individual affected by this condition displays adverse behaviors which ideally make it a disorder in that he or she may become antisocial. It may further lead to one becoming a kleptomaniac not forgetting the way he or she may clutter their living places limiting space and even inducing unwarranted and avoidable accidents.
To correct this disorder it would be imperative to consider various available options. For instance, one should seek psychiatric attention since it is a psychological disorder. It must be taken as a symptom of a more serious psychiatric problem that may eventually affect those one's personality. One should be given adequate guidance and counseling especially in the initial stages when one is noted to behave in an unbecoming way and when one starts hoarding things unnecessarily. This may help the individual to realize what he or she is putting himself or herself into (Maj et al 25).
It is important to effectively re-socialize such people by pulling them close and cheering them up to keep them from keeping things into themselves. In serious circumstances, medication may be prescribed for such people. They should be given antidepressants to ease the pent-up emotion and stress that might be keeping or making them antisocial and behaving in a way that can be said to be abnormal. Therefore, the fact remains that hoarding is a disorder that calls for immediate action to completely reverse and avert it (Andrews 338).