5 Red Flags that Could Signal Nursing Home Abuse
Making the decision to put your parent or other loved one in a nursing home can be difficult, but in many cases it is the best way to ensure they are able to get the care that they need. Sadly, nursing homes do not always provide the care and attention that their residents need. After you move a loved one into a nursing home, make sure you know what to watch for to ensure they are not being abused or neglected. The following are some of the biggest red flags that should cause you to look into a situation more closely.
Signs of Physical Abuse
Check your loved one for any scrapes, bruises, bumps, scratches, or other signs of physical abuse. While anyone can get hurt from time to time, and many elderly people take medications that cause them to bruise more easily, it should not be a constant problem. Keep track of every injury that you see, and get an explanation as to what happened. Even if the staff at the nursing home is not physically abusing them, they may not be giving them the attention and care that is needed, which is a form of neglect.
Emotional or Personality Changes
If you notice a sudden change in the emotions or personality of your loved one, this could be a sign of abuse. While it is normal to go through some changes when transitioning into a nursing home, you should watch for things like them being unwilling to talk about what is happening or other issues.
Signs of Malnourishment or Dehydration
It is not uncommon for the elderly to forget to eat or drink enough if they are not reminded. In fact, one of the biggest responsibilities of a nursing home is to ensure that their residents are getting sufficient food and water. If you notice that your loved one is showing signs of malnourishment or dehydration, this is a big concern that needs to be addressed right away.
High Staff Turnover
If you notice that the nurses and other staff at the nursing home are constantly leaving and new ones are coming in, this could be a cause for concern. Not only is high turnover a sign that the nursing home is not paying their employees well, but it also means that your loved one is constantly getting care from someone who is new to the job. This can result in unintentional neglect and other problems.
Offense Taken at Questions
Anytime you have any concern about the care that your loved one is receiving; you should bring it to someone at the facility. The facility should take your concerns seriously and provide you with reasonable answers within a short period of time. If you find that the people you talk to at the facility take offense to the fact that you are asking questions or even accusing them of abuse or neglect, this is a big red flag. The number one responsibility of a nursing home is to care for their residents. If this care is not being given, those in charge should want to know about it and address it right away.
What to Do if Your Loved One is Being Abused
If you have a strong suspicion that your loved one is being abused or neglected, it is important to act quickly. Contact us to schedule a free consultation with an experienced attorney. We can help you decide what next steps need to be taken and help to get any legal actions started if needed.