The Problem of Physical Abuse in Nursing Homes

Aug 07

While nursing homes are supposed to be a space where the elderly can receive the care and attention they need, it is a tragic reality that many incidents of abuse and neglect take place within these very walls. According to data from the Department of Health and Human Services, more than 2 million elderly residents have fallen victim to different forms of abuse inside nursing homes. Among the most rampant cases are incidents of physical abuse.

An elderly individual that is physically abused in a nursing home can suffer grave injuries. Sometimes, these injuries can gradually become so severe that they may even lead to instances of wrongful death. The most common types of physical abuse that occur in nursing homes include beatings, shoving, sexual assault, and inappropriate use of restraints. The most alarming thing about such incidents is that they are typically hard to detect. The task of noting common indicators of physical abuse fall to loved ones and family members.

Careful observation is necessary in order to notice signs that point to the fact that a resident in a nursing home is suffering from abuse. Certain issues such as dehydration, malnutrition, improper hygiene or sanitation, bed sores, and inadequate staff assistance can be indicative that graver incidents of abuse are taking place. In some cases, problems with overmedication and undermedication can also point to the fact that there is a larger dilemma to be dealt with.

During their visits, families are strongly advised to be sensitive to physical indicators that some form of abuse is taking place. For cases of physical abuse, the unexplained appearance of bruises, cuts, and other similar injuries is an obvious sign that something is clearly wrong. Other issues such as the resident’s continued decline in condition can also be an indicator of physical abuse.

If your loved one has suffered physical abuse while residing in a nursing home, it’s important to take legal action and hold responsible parties accountable for the trauma they’ve caused.

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