Hoarding classified as mental disorder for first time by World Health Organisation

Hoarding has been classified as a medical disorder for the first time by the World Health Organisation (WHO).

Hoarding as well as gaming disorder and olfactory reference disorder are now included in the International Classification of Diseases. It is here that hoarding is described as the "accumulation of possessions due to excessive acquisition of or difficulty discarding possessions, regardless of their actual value".

It adds: "Accumulation of possessions results in living spaces becoming cluttered to the point that their use or safety is compromised.

"The symptoms result in significant distress or significant impairment in personal, family, social, educational, occupational or other important areas of functioning."

This comes five years after the NHS recognised hoarding disorder.

Psychiatrists said the “extremely significant” decision would help doctors and the NHS identify people struggling with hoarding and improve treatment for a condition campaigners say affects up to 5 per cent of the population.

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