It’s an unfortunate truth, but those who have Alzheimer’s disease, dementia and other kinds of mental health issues in old age may be taken advantage of by the staff at a nursing home or other care facility.
Dementia and Alzheimer’s disease also put patients at a higher risk of falls and fall injuries, which nursing home or assisted-living facility has to account for. Failing to do so may be negligent on the part of the staff.
What can you do to protect your loved one from falls, injuries and abuse?
When someone you love has a degenerative illness, it’s important to take steps to support them. If they’re in a nursing home or assisted-living facility, meet with them regularly. If they are unable to recognize you or keep events organized in their memory, then there is a high risk that they won’t remember if someone hurts them or if they’ve fallen. Regular visits can help you stay informed about their condition.
You should physically examine your loved one as you help them change or assist them with their tasks when you visit. Check visible areas of skin for bruising or unexplained injuries. You may also want to take them to regular medical checkups to be sure that they’re in good health.
Watch for emotional changes in your loved one, as well. Any sudden change in their habits, unexplained fearfulness or signs of depression could be the result of neglect or abuse — and your loved one may not even be able to explain what they’re feeling.
When nursing home abuse or neglect strikes, take action
When a person can no longer help themselves, you can take steps to help them instead. If you suspect that your loved one was abused or neglected while in a nursing home, it may be time to speak to an attorney.