Nursing home abuse is tragic. Elderly people who are abused by those that are meant to be watching for them have a hard time coming forward about their abuse. For this reason, you must always watch out for the well-being of your loved ones who live in nursing homes. For a number of reasons, elderly people are at danger of abuse in nursing homes and assisted living institutions. Because an older patient lacks or is reluctant to inform a family member or other person about the abuse, abuse and neglect frequently occur and go unnoticed. Knowing the warning indicators of nursing home abuse might thus help you spot and report elder abuse and neglect. Unfortunately, even to the sufferer, abuse and neglect in nursing homes can go undetected. It goes without saying that there are clear instances of nursing home neglect and abuse, and these are very upsetting and devastating. If you’re becoming suspicious about whether or not your loved one’s home is being abusive, there are seven warning signs that you should be watching out for:
Bedsores can be a huge problem for elderly people. Not only are they painful, but they can lead to infections and other major health issues. Bedridden elderly people are at high risk of developing bed sores if not given the proper assistance and care. Nursing home staff members know this, so if your loved one is still developing bed sores, it may be time to call a Chicago nursing home abuse lawyer like RIL to look into the case.
Another prominent indicator of neglect is bed sores. Bedsores can form in patients who are not routinely moved or turned over by personnel. Bed sores may hurt and result in dangerous diseases. Employees at nursing homes should inspect
2. Damaged Property
When a nursing home patient’s property is frequently damaged, especially if it’s damaged without explanation, it could be a sign that abuse is going on behind the scenes. When you’re uncertain about the potential causes of property damage, it’s important to talk to both your loved one and the nursing home’s director. That way, if there is a reasonable explanation behind the patient’s property damage, you can discover it quickly before the situation escalates.
3. Unexplained Falls
Few accidents can physically harm elderly people quite like falling. Because their bones are more brittle, and since they take longer to recover from major injuries, falls can even be deadly for elderly folk. Properly run nursing homes do their best to ensure slip and fall, as well as trip, hazards are not present anywhere in the nursing home. Due to this, unexplained falls can be a major red flag signaling potential abuse within a nursing home.
4. Anti-Social Behavior
Anti-social behavior is not extremely uncommon in nursing home residents. However, if your loved one is typically cheerful, and then suddenly becomes anti-social and reserved without explanation, it could be due to behind-the-scenes abuse. If your loved one suddenly becomes quiet, anxious, or shy whenever staff members are around, this could be due to their fear of those staff members. Asking your loved one if they are alright is crucial in this situation, but make sure that you do so away from any potential eavesdroppers.
5. Suspicious Gift Giving
Is your loved one suddenly giving lots of gifts to a nursing home staff member? If so, they may be pressured to do so behind the scenes. Many nursing home residents live on a very limited income, so this type of emotional and financial abuse can upend their lives. If you find your loved one in a potentially abusive situation such as this one, you may need to confront the nursing home director about the behavior. To avoid these scenarios, some nursing homes may have strict policies in place that prevent staff members from accepting gifts (or at least gifts that amount to a certain value) from residents.
6. Self-Isolating Behavior
Similar to what we discussed above regarding anti-social behavior, self-isolating behavior can stem from similar abusive environments. Self-isolation can be extremely unhealthy for the mental well-being of nursing home patients, and can even increase the symptoms of already existing neurological issues. If you’re worried about the mental health of your loved one, you should make sure that they understand that help is available to them if they need it.
Water and food are necessary for people’ health. Withholding them from residents might have detrimental medical effects. Residents frequently require help feeding themselves. Malnutrition and dehydration are two signs of dietary deprivation among residents. A resident who is undernourished might weaken, increase their chance of falling, and become unable to fight off infections and other ailments. You should speak with a Philadelphia nursing home abuse lawyer since this is a very severe instance of negligence.
8. Unauthorized Bank Withdrawals
Unexpected, large bank withdrawals are not commonplace for nursing home residents. If this money is being withdrawn, and then practically disappearing, your loved one could be a victim of financial abuse by a nursing home staff member. Being upfront and honest with your loved one about the situation can help you get to the bottom of these withdrawals. Which will in turn help you if you’re looking to free them from their abuser.
Sudden Legal Changes Can Be a Warning Sign as Well
If your loved one suddenly redrafts their will, or other legal documents in a way that benefits a nursing home staff member, or the home itself, you should look into the situation immediately. In some cases, abusive behavior is used by nursing home staff to scam residents out of money, belongings, and other valuable assets. Once again, because nursing home residents are often living on an extremely limited income, you must help them watch over their financial stability at all times. If a potential abuser knows that you’re watching out for your loved one’s finances, they are less likely to try anything illegal.