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Nursing Home Abuse
Nursing Home Abuse
Elder Neglect
Emotional Abuse
Warning Signs
Physical Abuse
Sexual Abuse
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Warning Signs of Elder Abuse

Identifying the warning signs of elder abuse is not an easy task. In fact, it can be quite difficult when an elderly loved one is under the care of a professional caretaker or nursing home facility that you expect to be delivering satisfactory medical and emotional attention. Unfortunately, a number of nursing home abuse cases have illustrated that this is not always the case. Therefore, it is important for friends and family members to keep a close eye on the behaviors and condition of their loved ones when they are under the care of a nursing home facility or professional caregiver.

Victims of abuse are often hesitant to let anyone else in on their secret. Many seniors are threatened or harassed by their abusers, making them unwilling to alert anyone to the mistreatment. Others are ashamed of the abuse and embarrassed to bring the issue to more attention. No matter what the reason for the hiding and secrecy, the fact of the matter remains that it is often up to friends and family to identify the warning signs of elder abuse and then take the appropriate action to put it to an end.

How can you tell if there is a problem?

Despite what you may have been led to believe, identifying a potential case of abuse or elder neglect can be far more difficult than it appears. In many cases, the abusers and the seniors who have been abused do a good job of covering it up or excusing it away in a believable manner. This does not mean, however, that identifiers do not exist; it simply means that you need to know what to look for when you are suspicious of abuse or neglect. The following is a breakdown of some of the most common warning signs of the different types of abuse to which seniors are most often subjected:

Elder Neglect

  • Social withdrawal
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Unsanitary or unsafe living conditions
  • Inappropriate clothing for the weather
  • Unexplained or untreated physical health problems

Emotional Abuse

  • Elderly individuals who mimic signs of dementia
  • Elderly individuals who adopt unusual behaviors of rocking or sucking
  • Elderly individuals who start mumbling to themselves
  • Caretakers who belittle or threaten elderly individuals in your presence

Physical Abuse

  • Unexplained injuries
  • Personal items that have been broken
  • Reports of drug overdose or other inconsistencies in regular medications
  • Sprains, dislocations, and broken bones
  • Caregivers who refuse to allow you to visit an elder alone

Sexual Abuse

  • Unexplained genital infections or venereal diseases
  • Unexplained vaginal bleeding or anal bleeding
  • Bruises on the breasts or genitals
  • Torn or bloody underclothing

Reporting & Preventing Elder Abuse

If you have observed any of the warning signs described above, you should not wait to take action. No matter where the elder neglect or nursing abuse has taken place, your state has a hotline number that can be contacted toll-free to report the abuse. Typically, Adult Protective Services (APS) will need to be involved in the matter, however, it is suggested that a legal professional be alerted to the problem as well. Cases of this nature deserve to be taken to trial so the negligent / abusive professionals can be held responsible for their misbehaviors.

At DominaLaw Group, we listen to the seniors under our representation with an understanding ear. Then, we develop a legal strategy that can be used in court to successfully intervene in a facility or caretaker's abusive behaviors. The victims of elder abuse deserve to be compensated for the injury, illness, and emotional distress that were caused to them. As advocates for the innocent and voices for the unheard, it is our job to make sure that a senior's rights are protected and their needs are met to the fullest degree.

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