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6 Must-Know Facts About Elder Abuse in Assisted Living Facilities

Elder abuse is one of the most tragic widespread issues that America is facing today. In assisted living facilities, elderly residents and patients are frequently abused (and at much higher rates than many people realize). For this reason, you must be aware of these six must-know facts about elder abuse in assisted living facilities:

1. Abuse Can Take Many Forms

Many different forms of abuse can happen behind the scenes at nursing home facilities. Sexual, financial, physical, mental, and other types of abuse are the most common, however. Being educated about the signs of these types of abuse can help you protect your elderly loved one from abusive behavior behind-the-scenes at their assisted living facility. Additionally, assistance from a qualified elderly abuse attorney can come in incredibly useful, as they will have a clear idea of how to identify abuse, prevent abuse, and take legal action against your elderly loved one’s abusers.

2. Staff Members Can be Culprits

Many people look toward assisted living facility staff members when they expect abuse is happening behind the scenes. After all, these staff members have the most access to your elderly loved ones and have the most power over their day-to-day lives. For this reason, you should make it a point to be aware of the relationship your loved one has with their assisted living facility’s staff members. Doing so will help you be more prepared to look for warning signs of abuse, which can help you prevent abuse from continuing for long periods. Preventing elder abuse in assisted living facilities is your top responsibility as a family member.

3. But Family Can Also Be to Blame

Unfortunately, family members are actually more likely to commit elder abuse against those in assisted living facilities than staff members are. Financial abuse from family members is especially common, as elderly patients have their life savings stolen away by greedy family members. Since family members are typically the first line of defense elderly people in assisted living facilities have against abuse, those that find themselves being abused by family members find it difficult to find help. Those in this scenario should look toward trusted assisted care staff members, or legal reps, to hold their abusive family members accountable.

4. It’s Unfortunately Common

Elder abuse can seem like a rare occurrence (especially in assisted living facilities that are dedicated to taking care of them). That being said, this could not be further from the truth. Thousands of elder abuse cases in assisted living facilities happen every day around the US. For this reason, being vigilant about protecting your elderly loved ones, and educating them about the reality of elderly abuse in assisted living environments is key. Doing so can help you prevent abuse before it starts, and will help your elderly loved ones feel more confident in seeking out help if they experience abusive behavior.

5. Mental Health Afflictions and Elderly Abuse

When elderly residents of an assisted living facility have severe mental health afflictions, they are at a much higher risk of abuse. It’s a sad reality, but it’s the truth. Whether it be a greedy staff member or a family member, predators understand that it’s easier to manipulate mentally unwell patients. It’s also easier to get away with abuse perpetrated against a mentally unfit individuals (especially when they are elderly). For this reason, if you have an elderly loved one in an assisted living facility, and they are not mentally sound, you should take extra precautions to safeguard them against abusive behavior.

6. Elderly Abuse is Severely Underreported

Because elderly abuse in assisted living facilities is more rampant than we’d like to believe, the amount of unreported elderly abuse that occurs is incredibly high. Due to this, you should be constantly vigilant about checking in with your elderly loved one about their living situation. Every time you visit them, you should be on the lookout for any shady behavior or signs of abuse. Doing so can ensure your loved one does not become another statistic in the pool of unreported elderly abuse that occurs in assisted living facilities every single day across the US.

Watch out for Staffing Issues

In addition to the six facts we’ve mentioned above, you should also be aware of the number of staff that’s running any assisted living facility where your loved one is residing. Understaffing is one of the biggest threats to elderly security that exists within the assisted care industry today. By ensuring your loved one has the proper staff assistance, you can feel more assured that they will not fall victim to elderly abuse.

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