In recent years there has been a lot of attention regarding the care of elderly in nursing homes. Unfortunately, nursing home abuse and neglect are both on the rise, which is causing a lot of anxiety and trepidation for both the elderly and their loved ones. Even if you have done your research and think you have found a nursing home that will take good care of your parent or elderly loved one, the threat of injuries caused by nursing home abuse is still in the back of your mind. In the United States, approximately 500,000 seniors are likely victimized by elder abuse every single year. This is a shocking statistic that sheds a little light on how serious of a matter this is.
So, what can we do? The first step is to be aware that this is a problem. By educating ourselves and others about the dangers of nursing home abuse, we will be that much closer to preventing it from happening. Because the idea of nursing home abuse as a criminal problem in the U.S. is a fairly new development, there will undoubtedly be a learning curve when it comes to how to properly address this issue. As we continue to do more research and gain more knowledge about the causes and motivations of abusers in a nursing home setting, we will be more readily prepared to fight this abuse in a positive and productive manner.
There are a range of theories and reasons why violence and abuse takes place in nursing homes across America, including the following:
- Those who engage in elder abuse have learned that behavior from others around them and use violence to solve problems and obtain their desired outcome
- Abusers believe they are underappreciated or without recognition from their relationship with the senior, causing them to act out in a violent manner
- Abusers have a history of abuse themselves
- Abuse engage in a pattern of coercive tactics with the intention of maintaining power and control in a relationship with the elderly individual
It is important to note that elder abuse comes in all different shapes and forms. In many cases, the abuser actually accompanies the senior to the hospital, explaining the patient has fallen or sustained their injuries in some other manner, when in fact it was at their own hand. Because seniors do sustain fall-related injuries on a fairly regular basis, it can be difficult to know if these injuries are in fact a result of physical elder abuse, or a simple fall. Since it can be difficult to distinguish between injuries that occur from accidental falls and those that are caused by elder abuse, it is more important than ever that we take the time to educate ourselves about the signs of elder abuse:
- Financial exploitation
- Giving uncharacteristically large sums of money for care and companionship
- A caregiver has control of an elder’s money but is not providing for the elder’s needs
- Physical abuse
- Inadequately explained injuries
- Lack of basic hygiene
- Lack of food
- Lack of medical aids
- Lack of supervision, and so on
- Emotional abuse
- Unexplained changes in behavior
- Caregiver isolates the elder
- Caregiver is verbally aggressive or demeaning
If you believe that your loved one has been the victim of elder abuse, please contact Rad Law Firm today. Our Dallas nursing home abuse attorneys will go over your case with you and, if neglect or abuse is suspected, fight for your rights in a court of law.