Moving a loved one into a nursing home facility is a difficult decision. However, if you know that it's best for them, you can take comfort in the fact that they're receiving the care they require.
While it's never easy to think about, nursing home abuse remains a problem in facilities throughout the country. This isn't to say that your loved one will be the victim of abuse at some point. However, you should always keep your eyes open for any signs of abuse.
Generally speaking, there are four primary types of nursing home abuse:
- Physical abuse: This is the most obvious type of abuse, as it often leads to bruising and other injuries that are easy to recognize. For example, if your loved one suddenly has bruises on their arms and hands, you'll want to inquire about what happened.
- Emotional abuse: Often overlooked, emotional abuse takes on many forms. This can include things such as overmedicating to keep the person sleeping, isolation, harassment and threats if they speak out.
- Sexual abuse: It's uncommon in nursing home facilities, but not out of the question. Signs include but are not limited to bruises and cuts, bloody underwear and torn or stained clothing.
- Neglect: Most nursing home facilities understand the importance of providing residents with the care they require, no matter what it takes. However, neglect is a common concern, as it can lead to injuries such as bedsores and slip-and-fall accidents.
What should you do?
If you have any concerns about abuse, there's no time to wait. You should do the following:
- Speak with your loved one about your concerns, letting them know that it's okay to share any information with you
- Speak to the staff about your concerns, paying close attention to their reaction and the proposed action
- Move your loved one out of the nursing home facility
You don't want to jump the gun and make false accusations, but, at the same time, you can't sit around and hope that nothing is happening. If you do this, you could be subjecting your loved one to additional abuse.
If you've verified an instance of nursing home abuse, make sure your loved one is safe and then learn more about the steps you can take to protect their legal rights. Our website is full of advice and guidance on this subject matter.