What is Hoarding?

The coincidence of National Hoarding Awareness Week and Mental Health Awareness Week presents an opportunity to highlight the intersection between hoarding disorder and mental health. 


Mental health issues are prevalent in Northern Ireland, with one in five individuals potentially experiencing problems, emphasising the need for awareness and destigmatisation.



Hoarding disorder, recognised as a mental health disorder, affects 2-5% of the UK population and involves the excessive accumulation of possessions regardless of their value, difficulty discarding possessions and this causing distress, often resulting in cluttered living spaces and impaired daily functioning. The overlap of these two awareness weeks allows for addressing misconceptions surrounding hoarding disorder and emphasising its classification as a mental health issue.


By raising awareness about hoarding disorder within the context of broader mental health discussions, we can promote understanding, empathy, and access to resources for those struggling with this condition. Through education, advocacy, and support, we can work towards fostering a more inclusive and compassionate society for all individuals affected by mental health disorders, including hoarding.



Hoarding disorder not only affects the individual but also impacts family dynamics. Hoarded homes can pose health and safety risks due to clutter accumulation. Addressing hoarding requires understanding, patience, and professional help to create a safer living environment for everyone involved.


When dealing with hoarding behaviours, seeking professional support is essential. Your GP can guide you and connect you with appropriate resources. An ice-breaker document available on this website can help you initiate a conversation with your healthcare provider. 

When you’re ready to embark on the journey of decluttering and organising your home, Catherine Hamilton-Cooper, a decluttering expert from Declutterbird® in Northern Ireland, can compassionately guide you through the process. As a certified Institute for Challenging Disorganisation Level 2 Hoarding Specialist, Catherine brings specialised knowledge and practical skills to support individuals dealing with hoarding behaviors in their homes.


Catherine understands that decluttering can be a daunting and emotionally challenging endeavour, particularly for those dealing with hoarding tendencies. That's why she approaches her work with empathy and respect, ensuring that you feel supported and empowered throughout the process. With Catherine's guidance, you'll remain in control at all times, setting the pace of the decluttering journey.


Catherine aims to establish a safe, manageable, and comfortable living space tailored to your preferences. Through collaborative efforts, she identifies practical solutions for organising belongings, enhancing functionality, and promoting well-being.


With Catherine's expertise and guidance, you can embark on a transformative journey toward a less full home that fosters peace of mind and enhances your overall quality of life. Don't hesitate to reach out to Declutterbird® when you're ready to take the first step toward creating a space that truly feels like home.


Website – www.declutterbird.co.uk

Email – info@declutterbird.co.uk

Phone – 07889472730

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is widely recognised as one of the most effective treatments for hoarding disorder. It focuses on changing unhelpful thought patterns and behaviours associated with hoarding, helping individuals develop healthier coping mechanisms and skills to manage their symptoms.


Eva McAlea, a qualified and experienced Cognitive Behavioural Therapist, offers specialised support for individuals struggling with hoarding behaviours. Her compassionate approach and tailored treatment plans can help you overcome challenges and build a life characterised by clarity, freedom, and well-being. 


If you're ready to embark on a path toward healing and transformation, Eva is offering a free 60 min assessment for Declutterbird clients that would benefit from her support. 

Website - Empower Counselling 
Email - Empower@post.com 
Phone- 07793 005815  or 028 437 72835


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Disclaimer: Any information contained within our website is for informational purposes only and not intended to amount to advice. No liability or responsibility will be accepted by ourselves from any reliance placed on any of the contents of this website.

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