What Are Some Common Signs of Nursing Home Abuse?

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When you moved your elderly loved one into a nursing home, it was undoubtedly with the assumption that the facility was going to take good care of them. Sadly, as many families have learned one way or another, that’s not an assumption that always prove true.

Despite health care regulations and punitive measures aiming to deter it, nursing home abuse remains fairly prevalent around the country. There are five main kinds—physical, sexual, emotional, financial, and neglectful—and each can devastate both the victims and their families.

If any of your relatives reside at long-term care facilities, it’s wise to familiarize yourself with the most common signs of abuse. Should you notice one or more of them during a visit, you can take action immediately.

Here are some of the most telling signs that a nursing home resident is being neglected or abused by staff:

1. Poor Hygiene

By the time they move into a long-term care facility, most seniors need assistance with bathing and grooming. Should staff fail to provide it, their hygiene will inevitably suffer. At every visit, inspect your loved one closely to confirm that they’re getting the help they need with everyday essentials like showering and putting on clean clothes.

2. Unsanitary Living Conditions

While a little clutter is not necessarily cause for concern—most of the rooms in nursing homes are fairly small, after all—your loved one’s space should be free of garbage that’s more than a couple days old, dried spills, foul odors, and piles of dirty laundry. If it’s not, it means the staff is neglecting their duty to ensure clean and comfortable living conditions.

3. Bedsores

Bedsores, which are ulcers caused by prolonged pressure on the skin, are a sure sign of neglect. Especially common in residents with limited mobility, they’re indicative that the staff is not taking the time to reposition patients in their beds or wheelchairs often enough.

4. Unexplained Injuries

Bruises, lacerations, and fractures that aren’t accompanied by a legitimate explanation could be the result of physical or sexual abuse. Unexpected hospitalizations may also be cause for concern, especially if your loved one’s condition has always been fairly stable.

5. A Dramatic Change in Mood, Behavior, or Demeanor

Suffering any kind of abuse is traumatic, which can prompt a change in personality. It can also contribute to mental health disorders like anxiety and depression. If your loved one seems “off” in some way, it may be wise to evaluate the quality of care they’ve been receiving.

Discuss Your Case with a Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer in Florida

If you have reason to believe your loved one is being neglected or abused at their long-term care facility, turn to Emerson Straw for guidance. We will conduct a thorough investigation into the situation and then help you determine how best to proceed.

Our compassionate team has more than 70 years of collective experience in the legal field. Call (727) 821-1500 or fill out our Contact Form to schedule a free, no obligation case review with a nursing home abuse attorney in Florida.