One of the things we treasure in our homes is storage space. In order to keep things from getting cluttered, we need a place to put everything.

According to a recent study, it’s no wonder: we’re drowning in our own clutter.

New research explored in  ‘Life at Home in the Twenty-First Century,’ studied 32 families in the Los Angeles area over several years and found the “volume and sheer number of things in our homes is unprecedented.”

The study found 75 percent of the participants’ garages were so full of stuff that there was no room for a car.  That mountain of belongings isn’t just an eyesore — it also has health effects on mothers because it elevates their levels of stress hormones. Clutter is not good for your health.

Amassing so many things often happens so slowly that we aren’t even aware of it, but the researchers did find one surefire way to know things are out of control: the number of notes, photos and magnets on a refrigerator door. The more there are, the more likely it is that you have a clutter problem elsewhere in the house.

[The Christian Science Monitor]