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These warning signs may suggest elder neglect


When your loved one resides in a nursing home, they depend upon their caregivers to help ease their daily routine and give them a comfortable life. But when their basic needs are not met, your loved one may suffer.

What counts as neglect?

Neglect is one of the most common forms of abuse against the elderly. It involves denying an elderly person the basic care they are entitled to. Common ways that caregivers might commit neglect include:

  • Ignoring a resident’s complaints
  • Failing to administer medication
  • Leaving residents unattended for long periods of time
  • Failing to clean a resident’s room
  • Allowing a resident to remain unbathed
  • Failing to provide necessities like food and water
  • Not reporting health concerns to doctors or family members

How can I identify neglect?

As your loved one gets older, they grow more vulnerable. This makes them easy targets of neglect. Unfortunately, neglect often goes underreported. Your loved one might feel they cannot speak freely with you. They might also be unable to tell you due to dementia or some other symptom of aging.

If your loved one can’t speak out, here are some signs of neglect that you can look for yourself:

  • Unsanitary or hazardous living conditions
  • Bed sores
  • Dehydration
  • Malnutrition
  • Unwashed appearance
  • Foul odors
  • Unexplained injuries
  • Frequent visits to the emergency room

These signs might also be a simple matter of aging and failing health in your loved one. However, it’s important to investigate the details of your loved one’s care if these signs prove to be consistent problems. You shouldn’t discount neglect as a reason for your loved one’s health problems.

Knowing your loved one experienced neglect can be heartbreaking. Even having suspicions that they are not receiving proper care can be frustrating and stressful. If your loved one faced abuse at the hands of their caregiver, an attorney may be able to handle your questions and find the best outcome for your loved one.