How do I know if I am a compulsive hoarder?

Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)

You can know if you are a compulsive hoarder by asking yourself these questions:

  • Do you avoid getting rid of things?
  • Do you experience anxiety or distress when you attempt to throw something out?
  • Do you fear that you will need what you discarded sometime in the future?
  • Do you collect things you may never use or that have no value?
  • Do you feel compelled to buy (or get free) things even when you don't need them?
  • Do you have little control over your urges?
  • Has your collecting compromised any living space?
  • Is it difficult to cook, clean, or move about your house?
  • Do you have unusual emotional attachments to belongings?
  • Have you been diagnosed with OCD or other mental health disorder?
  • Has your compulsion to hoard affected your work or personal relationships?
  • Are things that should be discarded just getting moved from one place to another (churning)?
  • Do you have additional storage space outside of the home?
  • Are you or your family embarrassed about the clutter?
If you answered "yes" to most of these questions, then it might be time to seek professional help.
This content originally appeared on

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.