When you place a loved one in a nursing home, it is likely done out of love. You want them to be somewhere that will provide them with the special care they need while also making their golden years pleasant. This is why uncovering neglect of your loved one can be so very upsetting. Knowing the signs of neglect can help you get them out of a bad situation as quickly as possible:
Sign #1: Physical wounds
One of the most obvious signs of neglect or abuse is wounds. These may be unexplained bruises, cuts, or even marks that resemble carpet burns along the arms and legs (often caused by unnecessary bed restraints). You may even notice bed sores, especially if your loved one is no longer very mobile. Bed sores indicate neglect – no one is checking and helping your loved one roll over or move as they should. Wounds are even more alarming if your loved one refuses to talk about them or even appears nervous if you bring them up, since they may be experiencing threats as well.
Sign #2: Personality changes
Some personality changes can be expected as someone ages, but drastic changes aren't usually considered normal. If your loved one has become more withdrawn, angry, quiet, or nervous acting, then you have a reason for concern. Asking your loved one if everything is alright is enough. Some elderly family members won't mention trouble because they either don't want to burden you or because they are frightened. Take any major personality changes as a warning that it is time to get them out of the situation.
Sign #3: Weight loss
If your loved one is losing weight, it is time to intervene. Sometimes this can be the result of an illness or medication issue, so your first response should be a visit to an offsite doctor. They can help you determine whether the weight loss is from illness or if there is actual malnutrition from lack of sufficient food. In some cases. This is also a good time to make sure their medication schedule is being followed, which a doctor may be able to determine from a simple blood test.
If you suspect that your loved one is being neglected or abused, your first task is to move them to somewhere safe. Next, contact a nursing home neglect lawyer that specializes in elder care abuse and neglect so you can bring your loved one's tormentors to justice.