Senior citizens who are in nursing homes often depend heavily on assistance from the employees of the facility for their needs — which can make them particularly vulnerable to neglect or abuse. What are the signs of elder abuse, and how can you prevent this from happening to your loved one?
Preventing Elder Abuse
Frequent visits from family members and friends can help to prevent residents from being abused or neglected by staff members. Even if a person is in a nursing facility that’s received good reviews, being vigilant about the status of your beloved resident is still important.
Warning Signs of Potential Elder Abuse
Elderly residents typically won’t say anything about abuse or neglect, so watching for the tell-tale signs is important.
Some of the more common signs include:
- Frequent falls
- Seeming withdrawn
- Complaining of pain
- Being anxious
Sometimes, the abuser will try to keep the resident isolated so nobody has the opportunity to see that something is amiss. So, any attempt to keep you from your loved one without a good cause should be viewed with suspicion.
Nursing home abuse and neglect can have serious consequences for the resident. They can suffer serious medical problems, including broken bones. Sometimes, existing health issues might be made worse, which is common if the resident isn’t receiving their medications as prescribed. Mental health issues can also occur. These can be particularly difficult to address, partly because they often mimic the signs of the mental decline associated with age.
Why Does Elder Abuse Happen?
The reasons for elder abuse and neglect in nursing homes are unclear. There are some risk factors that might signal the situation will occur, including things like alcohol or drug use, lack of support, excessive stress, inability to cope, lack of training, and depression among staff members.
Any instance of elder abuse or neglect is atrocious. Taking action to stop the events from occurring must be a priority. When a resident suffers harm because of the situation, they might choose to seek compensation for the damages they’re dealing with.