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Recognizing the Signs of Elder Abuse

When you entrust your loved one with an assisted living or nursing facility, you expect them to treat your senior parent with the same care and respect that you do. Windermere family caregivers should expect nothing less than optimal care for their senior loved ones, but sometimes seniors endure what is known as elder abuse at the hands of the people hired to care for them. To protect your senior loved one from elder abuse, watch out for the following signs before finding a compassionate alternative for your elderly family member.

Unexplained Injuries

Bruises, sprains, welts, or dislocations that cannot be explained are some of the most common signs of physical elder abuse. Though seniors may face minor injuries during daily activities, you should be concerned if these injuries frequently occur and your loved one cannot accurately explain how it happened.

Excessively Supervised Visits

If a caregiver insists upon being in the room while you spend time with your senior loved one, he or she may be intimidating your family member to keep your loved one from alerting you to the abuse. Caregivers may stay with seniors while you visit, but you should be wary if they refuse to give you time alone with your loved one.

Personality Changes

Seniors who experience elder abuse may undergo strange personality changes, which can also be a sign of dementia. If your loved one hasn’t been diagnosed with dementia, it may be a sign that your loved one is experiencing emotional or physical abuse from a caregiver. Watch out for unusual behaviors and habits such as mumbling, depression, or anxiety, as these might be the result of trauma.

Weight Loss or Malnutrition

Seniors may lose weight due to a medical illness, but if your loved one suddenly loses weight without any underlying medical problem, it could mean your loved one isn’t eating healthfully or at all. Malnutrition, dehydration, and weight loss can be all a sign that your loved one is not getting the care he or she deserves.

Improper Use of Medication

If your senior loved one consistently runs out of a prescription or has a lot of the prescription remaining when it should be empty, he or she may be experiencing some sort of abuse. Changes in how much medication a senior is taking could be due to an unscrupulous caregiver committing health care fraud or overdosing a senior to make them easier to control.

If you notice any of the above signs of elder abuse and neglect, it may be time to seek out alternative care for your loved one. At Home Care Assistance, we ensure your loved one’s safety by subjecting our caregivers to extensive background checks and requiring impeccable references. Additionally, our caregivers receive optimal training through our Home Care Assistance University before being matched with a senior based on compatibility. Whether your loved one needs our services on an hourly or live-in basis, we provide seniors with at-home care Windermere families can trust. Call a compassionate Care Manager today at (407) 232-7155 to learn more about our care services and schedule a free consultation.