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Signs of Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect

Posted on in Physical Abuse

Illinois nursing home abuse and neglect attorneysAs the “Baby Boomer" generation ages, more and more people need the around-the-clock care offered by nursing homes and assisted living facilities. Long-term care facilities can provide a safe home for elderly and disabled individuals, but sadly, not every nursing home is up to standards. Vulnerable nursing home residents can be experience neglect, physical abuse, psychological abuse, sexual abuse, and financial exploitation at the hands of caregivers.

If you have a loved one in a nursing home, you should always be on the lookout for signs that something isn’t right. Often, the signs of elder neglect and abuse are subtle. Nursing home residents who struggle with cognition, memory, or speech may be unable to ask for help or communicate what has happened to them. Loved ones of nursing home residents should be vigilant for signs of neglect and abuse.

Withdrawn or Uncommunicative Staff May Be a Red Flag

Understandably, not everyone enjoys every second of their work day. Nursing home staff members have a job which can be physically, psychologically, and emotionally demanding. However, nursing home staff should still be personally committed to the well-being of the residents in their care. Nursing home or assisted living staff who avoid talking with residents’ family members or seem uncomfortable interacting with residents may be a red flag. Likewise, overworked, exhausted staff can be a warning sign that the facility is not staffed adequately. Staffing issues, including understaffing and undertraining, are some of the most common reasons residents suffer neglect and abuse.  

Watch for Changes in Mood and Behavior as Well as Physical Signs of Abuse

Many nursing home residents suffer from cognitive issues including Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. It can sometimes be nearly impossible to tell the difference between a behavior brought on by a cognitive illness and that brought on by the stress of being neglected or abused. Behavioral changes brought on by nursing home neglect and abuse can include residents being upset, agitated, withdrawn, and afraid. If your loved one developed a fear of being touched or new behaviors such as biting, rocking, or thumb-sucking, it may be a sign that they are not being cared for properly. Physical clues that a nursing home resident is being mistreated include rapid weight loss, dehydration, unexplained injuries and infections, bedsores, and frequent illnesses and infections.

Speak with an Experienced DuPage County Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect Attorney

If you have reason to believe your loved one was abused or neglected in a long-term care facility or nursing home, reach out to the skilled Chicago, Illinois nursing home injury attorneys at Schwartz Injury Law. To schedule a free consultation with our office, contact us today at 312-535-4625.

 

Sources:

https://www.cdc.gov/violenceprevention/elderabuse/definitions.html

https://health.usnews.com/health-news/best-nursing-homes/articles/2013/02/26/9-warning-signs-of-bad-care

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