Five Signs of Nursing Home Abuse
Aging or illness makes it difficult for some individuals to care for themselves. Therefore, many decide to move into a nursing home to receive the level of care they need. Unfortunately, nursing homes sometimes place profits before quality care and fail to provide their residents with the quality assistance they deserve, and therefore engage in nursing home abuse.
By understanding signs of when a loved one may be suffering and seeking legal representation if necessary, you can protect your rights and keep your loved one healthy and safe.
What are Signs of Nursing Home Abuse?
While there are a number of ways you may be able to determine that your elderly loved one is being harmed while in the care of another, signs you want to look out for include:
Unexplained Injuries or Bruising
It is common for nursing home residents to bruise easily due to their age. However, unexpected injuries and bruising are two of the leading signs of nursing home abuse. Pay attention to your loved one’s body and look for scratches, bedsores, broken bones, or dislocated limbs that they are unable to explain.
Sadly, nursing home staff members may take advantage of residents and exploit them financially. They may withdraw funds from a resident’s account without their consent. Other signs of this behavior include unexplained bounced checks; missing jewelry, electronic devices or other valuables; forged signatures on financial transactions, and suspicious credit card charges.
Adequate hydration is of vital importance for nursing home residents, as dehydration is a life-threatening condition. If you notice your loved one has dry, cracked lips and skin and is constantly thirsty, their nursing home may be failing to provide them with an adequate amount of water.
Also referred to as pressure sores, bed sores occur when there is prolonged pressure or rubbing on vulnerable areas of an older adult’s body. If your loved one has bedsores, know that these types of injuries are not normal and can easily be prevented. Bedsores typically arise when a resident has been turned improperly or not given enough water.
If your loved one is usually cheerful, outgoing, and excited, you should be concerned if they are suddenly upset, agitated, withdrawn, or unwilling to communicate with you. Ask yourself whether your loved one acts differently when a certain staff member is in their general vicinity.
What to Do If you Suspect Signs of Nursing Home Abuse
If you notice any signs of nursing home abuse, it is important to ask your loved one about their situation. Keep in mind, however, that they may be dishonest with you, as many nursing home residents are fearful of retaliation, do not want to seem like they are complainers, or feel loyal to their care providers.
Next, take notes of the signs of abuse and write down anything your loved one tells you about the situation. It’s also wise to take photographs of any injuries and speak to witnesses.
Contact a Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer at Randall & Stump, PLLC
If you suspect that there is an immediate threat to your loved one’s health, contact the police right away. Your next step should be to reach out to a nursing home abuse lawyer from Randall & Stump, PLLC who can help you determine whether the abuse is occurring, and guide you through the process of filing a claim.
To schedule a free, initial case consultation, contact us today at (980) 237-4579.