Signs of Nursing Home Abuse
When putting a loved one in an assisted care facility or nursing home, it is a difficult transition for both your family and your loved one. How do you know they are being taken care of properly? Are they safe and secure in this new environment? Elderly people are at a high risk of being abused when in a nursing home. Many cases of neglect and abuse go unreported because loved ones are not sure what to look for. Are you gaining suspicion that your loved one may not be receiving the best care in their assisted living or nursing home facility? At Fitzgerald & Roller, P.C., we have dealt with many cases of nursing home neglect and abuse. We understand how painful and confusing these situations can be. Here are some things to keep an eye out for if you believe that your loved one is being abused in their nursing home.
If you suspect your loved one is being abused, there are two major indicators to look for. Firstly, if there are any huge changes in behavior and personality. If your happy-go-lucky family member become extremely cranky and agitated out of the blue, or an extroverted person becomes quiet and withdrawn, there might be some form of abuse taking place. A second sign of abuse is that there is sudden tension or aggression toward their caregiver. Your loved one may act out toward their caregiver, or begin to be aggressive to their caregiver if they are being abused by them.
Physical abuse in an assisted living or nursing home facility is more common than you think. Minor bumps and bruises often go overlooked by family members or loved ones because we expect accidental falls and other injuries to happen. But when does it go from accidents to abuse? Physical abuse is defined as non-accidental use of force that results in bodily injury, pain, or impairment. Some signs of physical abuse to look out for are broken, sprained, or dislocated bones, sudden bruising, scars or welts on your loved ones body, the failure to take medication, or any sign of forced restraint on their body (such as bruises on wrists and ankles). Some less prominent signs of physical abuse are broken eye glasses, and the refusal of the caregiver to let you spend alone time with your loved one.
Most family members do not even realize that their loved one can be emotionally abused by a caregiver in a nursing home facility. Emotional abuse is defined as any act including confinement, isolation, verbal assault, humiliation, intimidation, or any other treatment which may diminish the sense of identity, dignity, and self-worth. Many times emotional abuse can have long lasting effects on a person, and can do more harm than physical abuse. Some signs of emotional abuse are your loved one exhibiting unusual behaviors that are uncharacteristic to them, and belittling of the patient by the caregiver. Another major indicator of emotional abuse is a sudden onset of dementia like symptoms, such as rocking back and forth, sucking of their thumb, and mumbling incoherently.
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If you witness or suspect any form of abuse in a nursing home your loved one is staying in, call Fitzgerald and Roller, P.C. We have success in filing these claims, and will make sure your loved one is protected by the law. Call Fitzgerald and Roller, P.C, today so we can assess your claim of nursing home abuse. We can help you get the justice your loved one deserves.