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A client with hoarding compulsions cluttered room that is mitigated with America's Most Organized's specialization in remediation services for clients who need assistance with recovering valuable items during the clean-up process.

Organized Thoughts: America’s Most Organized Blog

  • Writer's pictureMelissa Hladek

What is the Role of an Aging-In-Place Specialist?

Clinical clutter refers to the need to compulsively collect items that lack an intrinsic value (although the individual perceives each item as valuable). Collecting becomes a problem when piles of items impact an individual’s health, finances, and/or safety. The compulsive need to collect has many causes—emotional trauma, grieving a loved one, a medical illness, or the drive to collect could be inherited.  

America’s Most Organized remediates clinical clutter cases across the country. Owner Melissa Hladek holds numerous credentials and certifications in organization management and care management. As a Certified Aging-in-Place Specialist (CAPS), Melissa understands the unique needs, challenges, and care concerns faced by seniors who struggle with clinical clutter and extreme disorganization.

Aging-in-place services and solutions allow seniors to stay in their forever home safely.

What is Aging-in-Place?

As the National Institute on Aging explains, ‘aging-in-place’ refers to living the senior years at home or growing older at home. While some seniors move into a senior living community or a nursing home community (for those who need more medical care and assistance), others prefer to live at home independently. 

Seniors who age in place can have medical needs, restrictions, or mobility issues requiring at-home help or care. Aging-in-place seniors also could struggle with clinical clutter, and the compulsion could progress to a severity that threatens safety, wellness, or even personal finances (shopping addictions or compulsions lead to clinical clutter). 

The Role of a Certified Aging-in-Place Specialist

Seniors who battle clinical clutter could try to hide the problem from family and friends by limiting in-home visits or choosing to meet at another friend or family member’s home. When the family discovers the severity of the situation, they often need help cleaning the home to remediate the clinical clutter and make the home habitable and safe.


As a Certified Aging-in-Place Specialist (CAPS), Hladek helps families navigate the remediation process and find solutions and care resources to facilitate their loved ones living at home independently. The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) oversees the Certified Aging-In-Place Specialist designation, which focuses on the design of the home and how this design aids the aging-in-place goal. 

Melissa is connected to a network of professionals and resources to help families understand care options. She works in partnership with seniors and their families to create an ideal aging-in-place plan that also addresses any health and medical needs. Remediating the clinical clutter and cleaning the environment is part of the care plan. 

Family members and seniors work with Melissa to strategize clinical clutter clean-up. The individual and the family are invited to watch the clean-up process via Zoom. She and the team also discuss the sorting process. All collected items are divided into keep, donate, or recycle/discard. America’s Most Organized utilizes a transparent communication process; items are never removed without permission.

Seniors might suffer from a serious clinical clutter compulsion, and the remediation process might involve Melissa and the team sorting through items to locate important personal documents, family heirlooms, or other valuable items. 

Safety accommodations like rearranging the home's layout help seniors age-in-place safely.

Home Modifications for Aging in Place

Serious cases of clinical clutter involve piles of collections that block sinks, toilets showers/tubs, hallways and even doorways/ exits. Extreme clinical clutter impedes daily living, inhibits self-care, and facilitates a breeding ground for bacteria, insects, and vermin.

Remediating clinical clutter allows the family and the individual to create safe home modifications for aging in place. Clinical clutter clean-up results in a more relaxing home, and the process is designed to foster a feeling of happiness for the individual as spaces are clear and open. 

Melissa and the team guide the remediation process, assuring that the final home clean-up aids the aging-in-place goal. For example, rooms might be rearranged, and items are organized to simplify daily living. A cluttered kitchen can be transformed into a clean and streamlined space where every item has a perfect place. Bathrooms could be updated to integrate non-slip mats, modified toilets, shower/bathtub seats, etc. Modifications are unique to each individual’s needs.

Age-In-Place Home Care

Seniors who have medical needs benefit from at-home care, and Hladek helps family members find care for their loved ones who wish to age in place. America’s Most Organized helps family members understand all the options to create the most ideal outcome.

While a senior might wish to age in place, health issues could impede this request. In some situations, seniors could be safer in a space that better addresses their medical needs and concerns. Late-stage dementia patients might begin to wander, threatening the individual’s safety, which would necessitate around-the-clock care in home or at a facility.

Melissa and America’s Most Organized team discuss available resources and provide recommendations to family members. The goal of every case is to safeguard the health and safety of each individual.

Learn More About America’s Most Organized Senior Services

For families who need assistance or advice in managing a clinical clutter case for a senior family member, schedule a professional consultation today. Melissa and the team handle each case with complete confidentiality and help family members learn about all the available options and resources.

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