Elder abuse is an unfortunate reality that causes harm to older individuals. If you notice these signs in a loved one, it is important to get help quickly. In Los Angeles, the number of elder abuse cases is rapidly growing. With an increase in caregivers and long term care home occupancy, it’s becoming very common for abuse cases amongst the elderly to spring up.
Elder abuse can come in many forms. It can be something as simple as not administering medications that your loved ones need, or as severe as physical abuse. Learn the 2 critical signs of elder abuse and how to report it if you suspect it is happening.
Elder abuse is a serious problem in the United States today, and it’s on the rise. The National Center on Elder Abuse found that 1 in 10 elders are victims of elder abuse or neglect. Psychological abuse cases range from verbal harassment to nonverbal threats which negatively impact the elderly.
Examples of Verbal Psychological Abuse
Insulting & ridiculing a patient
Verbally threatening and intimidating a patient
Yelling or shouting at a patient
Making an elderly patient feel bad or distressed
Examples of Non-verbal Psychological Abuse
Isolating a patient from seeing friends & family
Ignoring a patient or giving them the silent treatment
Withholding food or water
Preventing a patient from socializing
Some of these examples are very common as of late. However, they are a little harder to spot compared to physical abuse. You’ll need to be on the lookout for behavioral changes, such as depression, agitation, fear or unusual behaviors. If these are noticed, it is important to contact the authorities immediately to prevent any further harm.
Unlike psychological abuse, physical abuse is much more visible. They come in the form of bruises, burns, broken bones and fractures. In the US alone, only 1 in 20 physical abuse cases amongst the elderly are reported. Any type of harm that is intentional, may be classified as physical elder abuse.
common signs of physical elder abuse
Hair & tooth loss
While the physical effects of elder abuse harm the body, long term care home residents can also become emotionally traumatized from abuse.
Please look for these signs of abuse amongst your loved ones and others. If you have noticed any of these critical signs mentioned above, it’s important to report them immediately. You should also seek professional legal advice from a qualified Elder Abuse Lawyer.
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