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Nursing Home Abuse

Making the decision to place an elderly relative in a nursing home is a difficult one. As you are placing your loved one’s health and well-being in the hands of others, look for signs of nursing home abuse. With the increasing problem of nursing home abuse incidents across the country, making the right choice becomes even harder. Nursing home malpractice is defined as an intentional act or negligence committed by a nursing home professional which may cause injury to a resident. There are different types of elder abuse that can occur, all of which can harm your loved one in varying ways.

Types Of Nursing Home Abuse To Be Looking For:

Physical Elder Abuse

This type of abuse is anything that may happen to your loved one’s body. Physical signs of abuse include broken bones, wounds, cuts, abrasions or burns, welts, bruises, swelling, sudden and unexplainable weight loss and any hidden injuries. In addition, unnecessary restraints may be a sign of physical abuse.

Mental Elder Abuse

Mental elder abuse can manifest itself in different forms and can include your loved one having feelings of fear, agitation, or hesitancy, disorientation or confusion, depression, withdrawal or unjustified isolation, sudden changes in behavior or unusual behavior patterns and/or the unwillingness to communicate. Another sign of mental abuse can be seen if the nursing home staff is making rude or humiliating comments to the residents.

Elder Neglect

If your elderly loved one is not receiving adequate care and attention, neglect may be occurring in the facility. Signs of neglect may include your loved one having an unkempt appearance, bed sores, poor personal hygiene, smell of urine or feces, unsanitary living environment, untreated medical conditions or malnutrition and/or dehydration.

Financial Elder Abuse

It is unthinkable that someone would exploit an elderly individual, but financial elder abuse unfortunately occurs. Some signs include missing/stolen property or money, abrupt and/or unjustified selling of property and any other radical changes in personal financial affairs.

If you discover signs that any type of elder abuse may be occurring, call Joe and Martin at (843) 357-8888 to discuss your rights and legal options during a FREE, comprehensive case evaluation.

photo of old man in a wheelchair

Recognizing the Signs of Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect

Whether your loved one is in a nursing home for short-term recovery or long-term care, you trust the caregivers to provide the utmost respect and care. Unfortunately, far too many elders are abused or neglected within nursing homes and assisted living facilities. According to the National Council on Aging, as many as 5 million elders are victims each year.
photo of old man nursing home abuse
Nursing home abuse is a difficult issue to face. It can exist in many forms which may or may not be recognized by clear, physical signs. Types of abuse can include physical, emotional, sexual, exploitation, neglect and abandonment.
It is important you pay attention to all forms of abuse or neglect, especially the three most common:

Signs of Physical Abuse:

Common signs of physical abuse against an elderly person include unexplained signs of injury.

  • Bruises
  • Burns
  • Broken Bones
  • Abrasions
  • Pressure marks or skin indentions
  • Dislocations

Signs of Neglect:

Often times, neglect can occur as passive neglect, or when it is unintentional as a result of an overburdened or untrained caregiver.

  • Dirty clothes
  • Bad hygiene
  • Bedsores
  • Unusual weight loss
  • Soiled diapers
  • Unkempt home
  • Lack of medical aids

Signs of Verbal of Emotional Abuse:

This is one of the most difficult problems to spot, especially if the victim in unable to convey what’s happening.

  • Withdrawal or apathy
  • Nervous or fearful behavior
  • Strained or tense relationship between caregiver and elder
  • Caregiver who is snapping or yelling at the elder
  • Forced isolation

If you believe your loved one has been the victim or nursing home abuse or neglect, contact Joe and Martin today at 843-892-1000!
Resources: National Council on Aging, Caring.com