We expect our loved ones in nursing homes to get the care they need from trained professionals. However, that outcome is not always the case, and unfortunately negligence and abuse are real threats to the health and safety of nursing home residents.
Some things to be look for
There are many clues that might help you determine whether a loved one is being abused or neglected in a nursing home. Ask yourself if neglect or abuse could be a factor in any of these scenarios:
- A parent or grandparent who used to be excited to see you is suddenly uninterested in having visitors.
- Living conditions are generally unsanitary.
- You notice significant weight loss or other signs of nutritional deficiencies.
- Your loved one has open sores.
- You notice unexplained bruises or other injuries.
- There has been a sharp decline in your loved one’s mobility.
- Your loved one is showing sudden psychological problems like depression, anger or resentment.
It’s important to note that many nursing home residents find it difficult to speak about neglect and abuse. In many cases, dementia plays a role in this. People living with dementia may also be especially vulnerable to manipulation by abusers, and this should be taken into consideration if you believe your loved one is being abused.
Take seriously the signs of elder abuse
If you believe that a nursing home resident is being abused, it is important to take action in a timely manner. A personal injury attorney with experience in these matters may be able to take swift action to put a stop to the abuse and begin holding the negligent or abusive party accountable. For more on that, please see our Elder Abuse FAQ.