Belsky Weinberg & Horowitz, LLC A Personal Injury & Workers’ Compensation Law Firm

How to recognize nursing home abuse in loved ones

Often families have to make the difficult decision to place their loved ones in a nursing home. When an aging loved one is no longer able to take care of him or herself and is in need of skilled nursing care, a Baltimore area nursing home is sometimes a good option. Families believe these facilities will take good care of their loved ones, but occasionally, nursing home negligence occurs. Families should be aware of the signs of nursing home abuse.

One sign that a loved one may be receiving abusive treatment is that there are physical or emotional changes. If a normally cheerful disposition person now is sullen, agitated or withdrawn, that can be a warning signal. If questions to care providers go unanswered, that can also be a sign that the care is not as it should be.

When visiting the care facility, if the staff appears to be frantic, there is a high turnaround in staffing and phone calls seem to go unanswered, it may not be the best facility for a person. Another warning sign is when a person refuses care from a certain provider. This can be a sign that they are suffering from mistreatment.

One of the most common signs of mistreatment is when a resident is dehydrated. If a loved one appears to be dehydrated, isn't being fed or other nutritional needs are not being met this is a serious warning sign. Finally, if a family just has a bad feeling about the care of their loved one, it can be a sign that something is not right.

If a family believes their loved one may have been the victim of nursing home abuse, a legal professional who specializes in personal injury may be able to help. An attorney can help investigate the circumstances surrounding the alleged abuse and get the answers families deserve. Compensation may be available for medical expenses, pain and suffering and other damages.

There are many forms of elder abuse and families who have loved ones in nursing homes should pay attention to how their loved one is doing. Recognizing the signs of mental abuse, sexual abuse, and physical abuse is important in making sure their loved one remains safe and well-cared for.

Source: health.usnews.com, "9 warning signs of bad care," Kurtis Hiatt, Feb. 26, 2013

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