Recognizing the signs of nursing home abuse and neglect

Worried about an elderly loved one’s well-being in their nursing home? Do you suspect that he or she is suffering neglect or deliberate abuse?

It’s a situation no one wants to find themselves in. Unfortunately, nursing home neglect and abuse is all too common. Learn how to tell whether your loved one may be in danger in their long-term care facility.

Do they seem withdrawn, frightened or depressed? Victims of nursing home abuse often shut down emotionally. You may feel as if their personality has changed. You may notice that they are not communicative or have reverted to self-soothing behavior such as sucking their thumb or rocking back and forth.

Have you noticed bruises, welts or broken bones? These are possible signs of physical abuse. They may also have occurred due to neglect, such as falling out of bed, falling out of a wheelchair, or slipping and falling.

Are there bedsores? These occur when staff does not turn the residents every two hours to prevent the skin and tissue from breaking down.

Do you see restraint marks? This may indicate that they were forcibly restrained. If so, was there a legitimate reason for the restraint?

Does the resident live in unsanitary conditions? Is the facility clean? The nursing home should be clean and residents should have clean clothes and linens.

Has your loved one lost weight or stopped eating? Malnutrition and dehydration are common issues in nursing homes.

Do you suspect over-medication? If your loved one seems groggy all the time, they may be victims of over-medication.

If you have noticed any of these issues, you may need to take action on behalf of your loved one. You can speak with a personal injury lawyer if you have questions about how to move forward.

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