Signs of Nursing Home Abuse

By Long Beach Elder Abuse Attorney on June 6, 2018

Placing your loved one in a nursing home is often a hard decision. You hope that they will be well taken care of, but the truth is that many nursing homes are understaffed and do not perform proper vetting processes for their employees. This can result in elder abuse or neglect.Nursing home neglect can lead to depression | Travis Siegel

When you visit your parent or grandparent in a nursing home, there are signs you can look for to make sure that they are being taken care of and not abused or neglected. If you notice any of these signs in your loved one, please don’t hesitate to call nursing home abuse lawyer Travis Siegel for a free consultation at 562-273-9118.

Signs of Emotional Abuse at a Nursing Home

Emotional abuse can be harder to detect than physical abuse, as it leaves no physical marks. However, you should be on the lookout for signs such as:

  • Changes in personality and behavior
  • Depressed or withdrawn
  • Lack of interest in hobbies and other typical activities
  • Atypical anxiety or fearfulness

Elderly nursing home residents can be emotionally abused or manipulated by nursing home staff, fellow residents, volunteers, or even family members. If your loved one has undergone personality changes that make you suspect emotional abuse, do not hesitate to contact Adult Protective Services and then call us to see if you have a case.

Signs of Physical and Sexual Abuse at a Nursing Home

Physical abuse usually leaves marks, so when you visit your loved one in a nursing home, you should check for unexplained bruises, welts, and other marks. If your loved one appears to be in pain or is favoring a certain body part, that could also be a sign of physical abuse.

Physical signs of abuse are often covered up, so you should also be aware of changes in behavior or movement by your loved one that could indicate abuse, such as:

  • Fearfulness or avoidance of a particular staff member or resident
  • Unusual difficulty standing, walking, or performing other physical activities
  • Fearful or unusual reactions to being touched

Sexual abuse of elderly men and women can also occur. This type of abuse is usually perpetrated by a caregiver or family member taking advantage of the elderly person’s inability to fight back or even be completely aware of what’s going on. Seniors often have cognitive issues such as memory loss and dementia, and may be heavily medicated as well. This makes them unique targets for predatory caregivers.

If your loved one suddenly acquires an STD, seems to be uncomfortable sitting, standing, or walking, or has bleeding or bruising around the genitals, these are signs of sexual abuse and should be investigated immediately.

Signs of Nursing Home Neglect

Neglect at a nursing home is just as damaging as physical or emotional abuse, and can lead to infection, illness, malnutrition, and even death. The best way to tell if staff at a nursing home are neglectful is to visit your loved one often and take note of their surroundings. Are their bed linens clean? Does the facility itself look clean and well taken care of? Are there plenty of staff attending to other residents?

Telltale signs of neglect at a nursing home include dirty clothes and sheets, unattended residents wandering around lost and unsupervised, bedsores, and weight loss in residents. These are all indications that the facility is understaffed and doesn’t care properly for its residents.

All nursing homes have a duty of care to provide a clean, safe, and respectful environment to their residents. When they breach this duty, it can lead to long-term negative consequences. If you notice signs of neglect, it is your duty to report the nursing home before things get worse. You and your loved one may also be entitled to compensation if the nursing home is found guilty of gross neglect.

Schedule Your Free Nursing Home Abuse Consultation

If you suspect that your loved one is being mistreated or neglected at their nursing home, do not hesitate to contact Travis Siegel at 562-273-9118 for your free, no-obligation consultation. We can help direct you to the proper authorities to report your case to, and we will let you know if you may have grounds for a lawsuit.

We serve clients in Long Beach, Tustin, Huntington Beach, Irvine, Santa Ana, and other nearby areas of southern California.

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Call Travis and his team at (562) 645-4145 or send us an email for a free consultation.