Thomas Ramey Watson

Schizophrenia and Hoarding

Most people used to think of hoarding as a harmless eccentricity — however, this compulsion has begun to be linked with serious forms of mental illness like obsessive-compulsive disorder and schizophrenia. And recently, compulsive hoarding has begun to receive attention in schizophrenia research.

In fact, people with schizophrenia often engage in hoarding behavior. They collect things at random, filling their homes with objects and other materials. The items might mean something to them or fulfill some hidden or unknown longing, or they might just be random garbage collected with no thought to its use or purpose. The hoarding schizophrenic collects these items, has trouble parting with them, and allows the home to be overrun with clutter.

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