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The Different Types of Emotional Abuse and How to Recognize Them

Posted on in Nursing Home Abuse

Chicago nursing home abuse attorneysIf you have an elderly loved one in a nursing home, you should know that while many nursing home staff have the residents’ best interest at heart, nursing home abuse and neglect is a sad reality. Sometimes it is due to maliciousness and other times, understaffing, poor staff communication, or inadequate staff training. Regardless of how or why it happens, nursing home abuse and neglect is unacceptable. It is up to friends and family of nursing home residents to be their advocates and watch out for signs of neglect or abuse. Physical abuse is usually easier to spot than emotional abuse. It is important, however, to learn about the main types of emotional abuse and how to notice if your loved one is being mistreated in a nursing home.

Purposely Demeaning or Humiliating Residents

Getting older and needing the around-the-clock-care that a nursing home provides can be an incredibly hard thing for some nursing home residents to accept. Many people who eventually need to relocate to a long-term care facility led vibrant, independent lives before being weakened by age, injury, or illness. This is why it is vital that nursing home staff treat residents with respect and dignity. Sadly, some staff may make fun of residents or mock them as amusement. Staff may be making what they think are private jokes among themselves at the resident’s expense, but the resident hears the ridicule. Unscrupulous staff may consider this behavior harmless, but in reality, mocking, jeering, and poking fun at residents in a type of emotional abuse.

Threatening a Resident

Admittedly, being a caretaker of elderly and sometimes cognitively-challenged nursing home residents is a challenging job. Sometimes residents refuse to eat meals, shower, or take their medicine. While this is understandably frustrating, staff resorting to making threats against a resident is deplorable and abusive. If you have a loved one in a nursing home who shows fear, apprehension, or suddenly becomes quiet around certain staff members, this may be a sign the staff is mistreating him or her.

Yelling, Scaring, or Name-Calling

Another type of emotional abuse occurs when staff attempt to scare a resident into obedience by yelling at them or otherwise scaring them. Residents who are being treated in this way often exhibit symptoms like sleep disturbances, heightened anxiety, or even behaviors like rocking, sucking their thumb, or mumbling to themselves. Not every resident shows obvious symptoms when they are being abused by nursing home staff, so it is important for loved ones and caretakers to take note of how the staff treats patients and how they interact among themselves. If you visit your loved one in a nursing home or assisted living and think something is wrong, always speak up.

Helping Victims of Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect Recover Compensation

If you or someone you love was mistreated in a nursing home, the experienced Illinois nursing home abuse lawyers at Schwartz Injury Law can help. Call 312-535-4625 to schedule your free, confidential consultation with our firm today.

 

Sources:

https://www.helpguide.org/articles/abuse/elder-abuse-and-neglect.htm

http://www.todaysgeriatricmedicine.com/archive/101308p24.shtml

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