3 Types of Abuse You Need to Know to Keep Seniors Safe
Even though abusing an older adult is something that would never cross the mind of most people, it’s a tragically frequent situation in the U.S. Elder abuse can arise in many variations, from physical to emotional, and it impacts the most frail and vulnerable among us.
Given that elder abuse is in many cases a voiceless problem, it’s imperative for families and friends of seniors to be familiar with the symptoms and signs of elder abuse to protect older loved ones. Our home care team have gathered together several of the warning signs that may suggest elder abuse.
- Evidence of injury such as bruises, scars, or welts, especially if they are noted symmetrically on both sides of the body
- Sprains or broken bones
- Drug overdoses or regularly missed medications
- Cracked or broken eyeglasses
- Signs of being restrained, such as bruises or red marks on the wrists
- Caregivers who refuse to allow the senior to be seen alone
- Controlling tendencies from the caregiver, such as:
- Yelling at or making threats to the older adult
- Humiliating or teasing the senior
- Ignoring the older adult
- Isolating the older adult from friends and relatives
- Behavior that resembles dementia, including rocking, sucking, or muttering to himself/herself
- Unhealthy reduction in weight or malnourishment
- Physical complications, such as bed sores, that have not been cared for
- Unclean living conditions
- Neglected personal cleanliness
- Inappropriate clothing or covering for the weather
- Unsafe living conditions (no running water or heat; faulty electrical wiring, other fire risks)
- Abandonment of the senior at a public place
The initial signs of elder abuse may be tricky to identify and may look to be symptoms of Alzheimer’s or increased frailty. Alternatively, a caregiver who is abusing the senior may possibly justify signs of abuse away. To help prevent abuse, make a point to call and visit senior loved ones often and watch for any changes in the older person’s personality or behavior. If any signs of elder abuse are observed or suspected, they should be reported immediately.
Hired Hands Homecare, provider of professional home care in Marin, CA and the surrounding areas, can help keep seniors safe, happy, and healthy. We can provide in-home care services, including Alzheimer’s and dementia care, to ensure that seniors are safe and well cared for. Contact us at (866) 940-4343 for a professional in-home assessment to learn how we can help your loved one.