What does obsessive-compulsive disorder 1

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder and Related DisordersWhen constraints determine our lives

Basically, man is a hunter-gatherer, with gathering referring to food that is eaten immediately or later. But modern people are also collectors: they collect stamps, coins, model cars, police hats and old furniture. As long as this is viewed as a hobby and the number of collectibles is not excessive, it is harmless. But if one cannot part with objects, even if they are not part of the hobby, there is a risk of pathological disturbance, compulsion to collect (pathological hoarding).


Pathological hoarding is characterized by the difficulty of parting with one's own belongings or of throwing things away regardless of their material value. This is an expression of a pronounced need of those affected to pick up things, combined with considerable suffering when throwing them away. Pathological hoarding differs from normal collecting in that large amounts of things are accumulated and one's own living area is so overcrowded or restricted that it can no longer be used. In extreme cases, it can lead to those manifestations that are nowadays referred to as “messie syndrome” in layman's terms: those affected simply collect everything, regardless of real or ideal values, and do not manage to part with even a single part. The doors can then hardly be opened because bags, boxes or stacks are in the way everywhere; some even move around in their apartments like in a labyrinth. Messie syndrome is particularly stressful for your relatives: They would like to help, but they can no longer get hold of the person affected. Nevertheless, it is precisely here that attention is required because the symptoms of an obligation to collect are not always visible from the outside.


However, the term “messie syndrome” is controversial and should be avoided because a) there is no scientifically precise description (no diagnosis), b) different diseases can lead to a “syndrome of confusion and disorder” (including depression , Manias and dementias), and c) this term already entails an evaluation and devaluation, which counteracts the urgently needed destigmatization and increased acceptance of mental disorders in society.