Placing a parent or other loved one into a nursing home is a difficult decision for many reasons. Once you do it, however, it is supposed to be a relief because you should be able to be confident that they will be getting the best possible care based on their specific needs. Sadly, some nursing homes don't provide the level of care that is needed, or can outright neglect or abuse their residents. To help protect your loved ones, it is important to know what signs to look for that could indicate that there may be abuse. The following are five of the most common signs to be aware of.
Personal Hygiene Issues
Those who are living in a nursing home often need help with their personal hygiene. When a nursing home is understaffed, or simply negligent, this is typically one of the first signs. Residents of nursing homes should shower or be bathed regularly. If your loved one's hygiene is not acceptable, this is a serious sign of neglect and needs to be addressed right away.
Rapid Degradation of Mobility
If your loved one entered the nursing home able to get up and walk around fairly well, but has had issues with it ever since, this could be a sign of neglect. Nursing homes may encourage residents to stay in bed, or remain in a wheelchair when they should be able to walk, because it requires less attention from the staff. When elderly people don't get regular physical activity, their mobility can rapidly decline.
Unusual or Unexplained Injuries
This one may seem obvious, but many people actually ignore injuries on their loved ones, or try to explain them away. One of the main roles of a nursing home is to help ensure the residents are as safe as possible. While some injuries are truly accidents, this should be pretty rare and easily explained. If your loved one has suspicious injuries, it is your right to get an explanation of exactly how it happened.
Changes to Psychological State
When there is abuse or neglect in a nursing home, your loved one may experience serious personality changes or other psychological issues. If you have noticed changes in your love one after entering a nursing home, this could be a sign of neglect or abuse.
Complaints of Mistreatment
If your loved one is complaining that they aren't being properly taken care of, listen to them. Far too many families just assume that they are exaggerating, or making things up, because the nursing home staff denies any wrongdoing. While it is possible that the complaints aren't valid, it is far better to be safe than sorry in situations like this, so make sure to take the necessary steps to investigate right away.
Act Fast & Get the Help You Need
If you suspect that there is abuse or neglect in a nursing home, it is important to act as quickly as possible, so evidence can be collected, and action can be taken to protect your loved ones. Contact The Tyra Law Firm to schedule a consultation and go over your concerns.