What Are The Dangers Associated With Hoarding?

Monday 21st November 2022

Alice Redshaw

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Hoarding can cause several dangers in a property, from obstructing fire exits to causing pest infestations.

At ICE Cleaning, we have extensive experience in completing hoarder cleaning across the country. Our technicians use the latest equipment to deliver a thorough decontamination, clean and sanitisation of the area.

Have a read of our blog to learn some of the main dangers associated with hoarding.

Poor hygienic conditions

This is one of the main concerns hoarders face when their items build-up. Substances like expired food, dirty cutlery, and pests can all take residents in the home of a hoarder.

You could become ill if exposed to pests in your home, who are often carriers of harmful diseases. Also, animal faeces and dead animals are another threat you could come across, which would make living in your home very unpleasant.

Pests seek shelter, food and warmth from our properties. The kitchen can become unhygienic and smell badly if pests are trying to get at your food sources.

Plumbing issues

Plumbing issues can ensue from hoarding for long periods of time. Matter can fall down the drains, such as food, small items and other substances.

This can block drains and cause water issues that you will need a professional to sort out for you. However, they may find it hard to enter the home if the possessions are in the way of the plumbing problem. 

Blocked drains could cause leaks and flooding in homes, and sometimes even sewer backups. Sewage cleaning is detrimental to human health, containing harmful chemicals such as hydrogen sulphide and methane.

Where you can, don't allow matter down the drain that shouldn't be there. This includes toilet facilities and showers/baths. It can be difficult to sort out and expensive to remediate.

Increase in the fire risk

Fire risks are a common issue in the house of a hoarder, as flammable items are often placed close together and near ignition sources. 

It also means that the fire will spread quickly, as there could be lots of other combustible items nearby. The volume of possessions can block emergency exits too, which puts the homeowners' life at risk.

The evacuation process will be much more complicated, and in some cases nearly impossible if there isn't a path the hoarder can take to the exit.

Consequences of fire damage can be devastating, and costly to repair. Not only this, but if you live in an apartment building or your home is attached to a neighbour, you could be putting their health at risk.

Lowers the air quality

In hoarding scenarios, you will see a significant increase in the levels of dust in the environment. This can lower the air quality and make it more difficult to breathe for residents.

An effect of this is a rise in the humidity levels and moisture in the building. This could lead to mould growth, which carries its own range of health implications. 

Should you find mould in your property, you must not attempt to deal with it yourself. Cleaning mould off the wall with bleach does not treat the spores in the air, and you will see the problem coming back soon. 

Impact on mental health

Those who suffer from hoarding may not feel comfortable inviting visitors over. This can lead to feelings of isolation.

Hoarding can be associated with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), where someone feels compelled to collect items that don't hold value to other people. They can find it incredibly difficult to part with their belongings.

If you have a family member who is affected by hoarding, let them know you are there to support them. In some cases, it can be hard to know where to start - check out our blog to find out more how you can help someone in this situation.

In the event of an emergency, a build-up of possessions can make it difficult for personnel to enter the premises and treat the patient. We can help you return your site to a safe environment with our discreet and sensitive services, following stringent health and safety practices while we do so.

Our accreditations

Our hoarder cleaners hold a variety of industry accreditations, helping to support them in the completion of their work. This includes with:

Get in touch

Contact us today on 0208 066 0360 or enquiries@icecleaning.co.uk to find out more about our hoarder cleaning services.

Zoe Dunning

Zoe Dunning

Sales Representative

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