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4 signs of nursing home abuse and neglect that should not be ignored

On Behalf of | Mar 5, 2024 | Nursing Home Neglect And Abuse

Enrolling a loved one into a nursing home can be a difficult decision, but it’s often made with the hope of providing them with the best possible care and support. Families often place immense trust in these facilities to provide the highest standard of care for their elderly relatives.

Unfortunately, nursing home abuse and neglect are realities for some residents. Therefore, it’s crucial for family members and caregivers to be vigilant and aware of potential signs indicating mistreatment so they can intervene if necessary.

Unexplained injuries and physical changes

One of the most apparent indicators of abuse or neglect in nursing homes is the presence of unexplained injuries or bruises on the resident’s body. Family members should be mindful of any physical signs on a loved one, such as bruises, cuts, broken bones or bedsores. While accidents can happen, unexplained or frequent injuries can be red flags. Additionally, sudden weight loss, dehydration or poor hygiene could indicate neglect in meeting their basic needs.

Changes in behavior and demeanor

Caregivers and guardians should also pay close attention to their loved one’s emotional well-being to see if they seem withdrawn, depressed, anxious or fearful. They might hesitate to talk about their experiences or show unusual emotional outbursts. Sudden changes in personality or behavior could be signs of emotional or psychological abuse.

Unsanitary living conditions

The living environment in a nursing home should be clean and well-maintained. Unpleasant odors, dirty bedding, uncleaned surfaces or infestations of pests may signify neglect in maintaining proper hygiene standards. This can pose serious health risks to residents.

Financial discrepancies

Caregivers should also be aware of any unexpected changes in their loved one’s finances. Missing personal belongings, unauthorized charges on their accounts or pressure to change their will or beneficiaries could indicate financial abuse.

If you notice any signs of abuse or neglect, it’s crucial to take action. If possible, talk to your loved one directly and express your concerns. You should also report your concerns to the nursing home management and/or seeking legal guidance, depending on the severity of your concerns at issue. By staying vigilant and taking necessary legal action, you can help to better ensure your loved one’s safety and well-being in a nursing home setting.