GRANADA, Spain, March 16 (UPI) -- Collecting dolls, thimbles or toy soldiers can have good psychological effects, but a Spanish researcher says for some collecting can become uncontrolled.
Professor Francisca Lopez Torrecillas at the University of Granada says in principle, and as long as the hobby is performed under control, collecting is good from the psychological point of view, as it helps in developing perseverance, order, patience and memory.
However, collecting can become an obsession, especially among the vulnerable -- individuals with low self-esteem, poor social skills and difficulty in facing problems.
"When people have this feeling of personal inefficiency, compulsive collecting helps them in feeling better," Torrecillas said in a statement.
In recent years, "a very significant increase has been observed of cases where uncontrolled collecting has caused obsessive-compulsive disorder and shopping addiction."
Torrecillas said certain attitudes such as the need for control, perfectionism, meticulousness and extreme order are very frequent traits in people who enjoy collecting, but they are also closely related to psychological disorders.