Signs of Nursing Home Abuse or Neglect
The decision to move a loved one to a nursing home can be difficult, but family members may take comfort in the fact that nursing homes are often able to provide levels of care that families or individuals on their own cannot. That being said, while nursing homes have a duty to provide residents with the level of care and excellent treatment that they deserve, they often fall short of this standard. To be sure, nursing home abuse and neglect is more common than one would like to think, and as such, being aware of the signs of nursing home neglect and abuse is important. If you have a loved one in a nursing home in Oklahoma City or surrounding areas, here are some signs to look out for–
Physical Signs of Abuse or Neglect
The physical signs of abuse or neglect are much easier to recognize than the emotional or psychological signs. Some of these signs may include:
- Weight loss, indicating that the resident is not being fed or receiving proper nutrition;
- Deterioration in physical condition, which again could signify a lack of proper nutrition;
- Bruises, scratches, or physical marks, which may indicate physical abuse or restraint;
- Torn or bloody clothing, indicating physical abuse or sexual abuse; and
- Poor hygiene, indicating that the resident’s care is being neglected.
If you notice any signs of abuse or neglect and you believe your loved one to be in threat of harm, you should report the abuse immediately, and should not hesitate to contact the police.
Signs of Neglect – Psychological and Emotional Changes
Abuse isn’t always physical; sometimes, residents are isolated, neglected, teased, or otherwise ignored and not cared for. While this may have some physical manifestations–such as weight loss or a deterioration in physical condition and general health–there are also typically a number of emotional changes, too. For example, a resident may display feelings of withdrawal, anger, depression, or fear, all of which can indicate that abuse or neglect are occurring.
What to Do if You Think Abuse or Neglect Are Occurring
As stated above, nursing home abuse and neglect is shockingly common, with “predators finding elderly patients to be easy prey,” as reported by CNN. If you think that your loved one could be a victim of nursing home abuse or neglect, do not hesitate to act. Not only should you immediately report the abuse, but you should also contact an experienced Oklahoma City nursing home abuse lawyer who can assist you in holding the nursing home liable for harm.
At the law offices of Brown & Gould, PLLC, our attorneys are here to help you. For a free consultation, please contact us today.