Steri-Clean helps hoarders cut throug...

Steri-Clean helps hoarders cut through excess clutter

There are 21 comments on the San Gabriel Valley Tribune story from Nov 10, 2008, titled Steri-Clean helps hoarders cut through excess clutter. In it, San Gabriel Valley Tribune reports that:

It was not a pretty scene. An elderly man's Walnut home had become infested with rats, crammed with old clothes and full of piles of books and other literature and trash - about 35 tons worth.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at San Gabriel Valley Tribune.

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Lynne in San Diego

United States

#1 Nov 11, 2008
I am a compulsive hoarder. Since being diagnosed about three years ago, I have learned quite a bit about my condition. Specifically, I know enough to know that this article contains dangerously inaccurate information. Compulsive hoarding is NOT due to "a deeply rooted need for control and security."

The most prominent researchers in the field are in agreement that compulsive hoarding is an anxiety disorder associated with abnormalities in specific regions of the brain. There are deficits in information-processing such as memory, attention, and decision-making, which are thought to be related to hoarding.
Also, there are “observed differences in cerebral glucose metabolism”; “diminished activity in the cingulate cortex”; and a number of other differences. See: Sanjaya Saxena, M.D,‘The Neurobiology and Medication Treatment of Compulsive Hoarding: http://www.ocfoundation.org/hoarding/treatmen...

If one views hoarders as suffering from "a deeply rooted need for control and security," there is no hope for successful treatment. But when treated as the anxiety disorder it is -- by using exposure and response prevention and cognitive behavior therapy -- many hoarders, at least 50 per cent of those who undergo treatment, can overcome their disorder and lead normal lives.

The best source for accurate information and state-of-the-art research about compulsive hoarding is found on the Obsessive Compulsive Foundation website, which has an entire site for hoarding: http://www.ocfoundation.org/hoarding/news-ann...

No one should misdirect their financial resources to treatment by therapists who do not understand, and have not bothered to learn, the reasons for hoarding and the most successful treatment methods.
DESERT RAT

Scottsdale, AZ

#2 Nov 11, 2008
One of my ex-wives used to keep our house looking like that. It was hard to find things sometimes.
Larry

Rancho Cucamonga, CA

#3 Nov 11, 2008
Do these people know that there is something wrong with them or is it a subconscience thing?
whatado

United States

#4 Nov 11, 2008
DESERT RAT wrote:
One of my ex-wives used to keep our house looking like that. It was hard to find things sometimes.
Is she an ex-wife because you couldn't find her? ;)
Snugz

United States

#5 Nov 11, 2008
DESERT RAT wrote:
One of my ex-wives used to keep our house looking like that. It was hard to find things sometimes.
I'm not sure what I find more amusing "One of my ex-wives" (dare I ask..one of how many?) or "it was hard to find things sometimes" (only sometimes?) Thanks for the smile and giggle!!
Snugz

United States

#6 Nov 11, 2008
whatado wrote:
<quoted text>
Is she an ex-wife because you couldn't find her? ;)
**grinz***
Lynne in San Diego

Corvallis, OR

#7 Nov 11, 2008
Larry: We know we are "different." We know we are distressed about our hoarding. We hate it. How could we not? However, many or most hoarders do not know they have a MENTAL HEALTH DISORDER, unfortunately. I am lucky I found out and could seek treatment.

Articles like this one are dangerous because they indicate it is an individual failing, and not a disorder. That prevents getting proper treatment, and continues the stigma. Just take a look at the other comments here, to this article. Several of the commentators think it is appropriate to make fun of this medical condition. I wounder ... would they also make fun of a person missing a leg? A soldier returned from Iraq with a psych disorder? A senior with clinical depression?

The stigma and humiliation is a major reason people who hoard do not seek help. They are often humiliated. They are usually misunderstood.
DESERT RAT

Scottsdale, AZ

#8 Nov 11, 2008
I've read this article three times and have a different opinion each time. Sometimes it seems like an adertisement and then it seems like actual caring by the Steri-clean people.

With an adress included I'm leaning towards an AD.

I have witnessed situations like this and the people who caused it are extremely intelligent. A shor t circuit in the brain is the best reason I can come up with. I hope the person is well taken care of and gets treatment.
just-Rog

United States

#9 Nov 11, 2008
I don't date dirty women. If a woman turned out like this elderly man on the article, I would have gotten rid of her on day one.
DESERT RAT

Scottsdale, AZ

#10 Nov 11, 2008
I'd give her two maybe three or four days depending on things. Then borrow some money from her and split. Tell her I need the money to look for a job.
just-Rog wrote:
I don't date dirty women. If a woman turned out like this elderly man on the article, I would have gotten rid of her on day one.
Steri-Clean

Rancho Cucamonga, CA

#11 Nov 11, 2008
Please understand that the comments you are referring to were not by us. We are caring individuals and unfortunately there is very limited knowledge in hoarding out there by the professional therapists. We actually teach people about hoarding besides helping them clean their homes. It is a completely misunderstood psychological disorder that needs a lot of more recognition in order to get more funding. As we state in the article, hoarders are most often brilliant people that have a problem with in the frontal lobe of their brain, and you are correct, they often are not aware they have a problem. The other thing to realize it that like any psychological disorder, it is not cured, it can only be held in check with medication and therapy. Please don't type in yout immature comments on here, let's discuss the real issue itself so people have a true understanding.
Cory Chalmers
Steri-Clean
Larry

Rancho Cucamonga, CA

#12 Nov 11, 2008
Hoarding seems to me to be pretty common just as OCD is. The thing with OCD is that many times people don't realize they have it.
Larry

Rancho Cucamonga, CA

#13 Nov 11, 2008
Thanks for the info :)
Lynne in San Diego wrote:
Larry: We know we are "different." We know we are distressed about our hoarding. We hate it. How could we not? However, many or most hoarders do not know they have a MENTAL HEALTH DISORDER, unfortunately. I am lucky I found out and could seek treatment.
Articles like this one are dangerous because they indicate it is an individual failing, and not a disorder. That prevents getting proper treatment, and continues the stigma. Just take a look at the other comments here, to this article. Several of the commentators think it is appropriate to make fun of this medical condition. I wounder ... would they also make fun of a person missing a leg? A soldier returned from Iraq with a psych disorder? A senior with clinical depression?
The stigma and humiliation is a major reason people who hoard do not seek help. They are often humiliated. They are usually misunderstood.
whatado

United States

#14 Nov 11, 2008
DESERT RAT wrote:
I'd give her two maybe three or four days depending on things. Then borrow some money from her and split. Tell her I need the money to look for a job.
<quoted text>
Are you sure you wouldn't wait until after the '3rd date'-you know, the wham, bam, thank you maam?
Matt

Rancho Cucamonga, CA

#15 Nov 11, 2008
They finally found "Poster of Truth" under all her junk!
Maggie

Seattle, WA

#16 Nov 12, 2008
I believe each person having a laugh about hoarding here has some individual foible or issue of their own that they would not enjoy having held up to ridicule on a public forum. How about a little tolerance, instead, for one another? Is hurting someone who suffers from this problem really the best you can do by way of response? Are you really trying to show something about you...like how clever you may be? The rules for posting clearly state: "Be polite." For those who don't know, this means being respectful to and of one another. I second the request to be honor this guideline. This disorder causes unbelievable pain to the sufferers and their loved ones already.
Lynne in San Diego

United States

#17 Nov 14, 2008
Steri-Clean/Cory Chalmers: I urge you to spend some time on the Hoarding page at the Obsessive Compulsive Foundation web site. Your statement is NOT TRUE, that hoarding "can only be held in check with medication and therapy." Therapy yes -- the right kind of therapy (cognitive behavior therapy) but there is no medication that is considered effective for hoarding. Dr. Saxena at UCSD, formerly at UCLA, ran one study that indicated some moderate success with medication, but there are no other published studies that have duplicated his results.
Warren Doget

Chino, CA

#18 Nov 14, 2008
It is a shame but when I knew Cory and Tammy I didn't realize their intellectual ability. I am glad that I knew both of them and sorry that our friendship has ended. I wish the best to both of them in the future in their endeavors.
Steri-Clean

Rancho Cucamonga, CA

#19 Nov 22, 2008
Lynne,
Believe me, we have studied this disorder more than you would believe. When I said it can sometimes be kept in check with therapy and medication, that is a true statement. You are correct, there is no proven medication for hoarding itself as of yet, but the medication treats the often underlying psychological disorder associated with it, most often depression. We just spoke alongside Dr. Saxena at the Orange County Summit on Hoarding and have read all of his literature. I know this is a personal issue, but believe me we are on your side and devoting a lot of time, effort and money into getting the correct facts out there. Feel free to contact me at any time if you want to talk more.
Kidult

United States

#20 Nov 23, 2008
"hoarders are not inherently "dirty" or "lazy."
Hoarding will remain in the dark because of ignorant people, and those who find it funny.

I am a compulsive hoarder who has made some progress on my own. Not many therapists know how to treat hoarding. There are millions of people who live with this secret. I thought the article was ok, its good to see more attention on compulsive hoarding. I wonder if it is actually a mental disorder by itself. Many experts say it is a symptom of OCD. Professionals have said that I have some OCd tendencies along with depression, anxiety, bi-polar and dependent personality disorder.

My hoarding does represent some security and control. I am a fear-based worrier. I am afraid to move out on my own. My hoarding mess is a wall to living life and taking risks. Its a way for me not to grow-up. I am trying to learn why I have this very disruptive symptom. I have let it ruin my life. It has robbed me of prescious time. Time is the highest cost not the money I have wasted(though that bothers me). I would love to participate in research.
cm_845@yahoo.com

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