As of 2020, nursing homes in the US had more than 1.29 million residents. Most are at least 65 years old, although some are younger. The majority of them also have a disability or a chronic health condition.
As such, nursing home residents rely on their homes’ medical and non-medical staff for help.
Unfortunately, many types of elder abuse in nursing homes are prevalent.
To that end, we created this guide listing the common types and signs of nursing home abuse. Read on to discover what these are so that you can protect your elderly loved one from such crimes.
1. Psychological Abuse
Studies suggest that psychological abuse is the leading kind of nursing home abuse. According to researchers, about one in three residents experience this type of abuse. In such cases, abusers threaten, intimidate, yell at, ridicule, or scare their victims.
Victims of psychological abuse, in turn, may become depressed, agitated, or fearful. They may refuse to interact with others, even their loved ones. They may also develop unusual habits or sudden negative changes in their personality.
If your loved one exhibits any of these symptoms, it may be time to hire a lawyer to investigate. Your attorney can also assist you in filing a nursing home abuse lawsuit. They can also help you save your loved one from the offenders’ dangerous minds.
2. Physical Abuse
Physical abuse involves the use of physical force that causes physical harm. Since these can have visible physical manifestations, they can be easier to detect.
As such, be on the lookout for even minor scratches, bruises, and wounds. These may be a result of the facility’s improper use of physical restraints. It’s even more vital to call for outside help if your loved one sustained disabling injuries.
Nursing home neglect is the failure of a facility to meet its residents’ basic needs. Such needs include access to food, water, clothing, hygiene, and medical care.
For that reason, malnutrition in nursing homes is one of the most common types and signs of neglect. Your loved one’s declining health may also be due to the home’s failure to give them their medicines.
In such cases, please be sure to get in touch with outside medical and legal help. This way, they can look into the nursing home’s illegal and unethical behaviors.
4. Financial Abuse
Financial abuse is so common that they cost seniors in the US $3 billion to $37 billion a year. In nursing homes, staff can commit these crimes by scamming their residents. Some even outright steal their residents’ money or belongings.
A solid sign of financial abuse in nursing homes is if your loved ones’ personal items have gone missing. Lost or “misplaced” ATMs and credit cards can also indicate financial elderly abuse.
5. Sexual Abuse
Sexual abuse is a nonconsensual sexual act that can occur in nursing homes, too. Such crimes involve rape, unwanted touching, sexual assault, or indecent exposure.
Pelvic injuries and problems with sitting or walking are some signs of sexual abuse. If your loved one complains about pain in the genitals or anus, take that as a red flag too. Panic attacks or social isolation can also be symptoms of sexual abuse.
Save Your Loved One from Potential Abuse in Nursing Homes
Please keep in mind that any type of abuse in nursing homes can be deleterious or, worse, even deadly. That’s why it’s vital you know how to spot the signs of such crimes. This way, you can save your loved ones by taking them out of such a dangerous environment ASAP.
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