Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect – All You Need To Know!

Did you know? According to WHO, “Rates of abuse of older people are high in institutions such as nursing homes and long-term care facilities, with 2 in 3 staff reporting that they have committed abuse in the past year.”

Elderly parents have unique needs and require special attention and care as they age. However, instances of abuse in nursing homes have led to an increase in the demand for attorneys representing nursing home neglect victims

In such situations, it’s natural to feel helpless and concerned for your parents. That’s why it’s crucial to grasp the best practices for caring for the elderly. Nowadays, it is common to opt for nursing home care for our aging loved ones when the resident’s health and safety requirements become too complex and demanding to be managed at home. We expect the nursing home to meet our high standards for the general and medical care they provide, including the basics like food, water, safety, and cleanliness. However, neglecting or abusing a resident can lead to severe harm or even death. To that end, elder abuse and neglect will be thoroughly explored here. 

In our communities, nursing home abuse is a horrific reality that impacts our elderly population. We expect the nursing home staff to treat our elderly loved ones with respect and decency when we place them there. Even more so, we intend to pick a place to give them the greatest care possible. Residents of nursing homes are often hesitant to report abuse for fear of retaliation. However, several forms of abuse make it difficult to identify. You should always be on guard when visiting a loved one in a care facility and know the warning signs of abuse.

Understanding Nursing Home Negligence:

Elderly people in nursing homes can be abused in various ways, including through physical contact, verbal harassment, sexual contact, or monetary exploitation. Abusive behavior consists of overt acts perpetrated by one individual against another, usually with a maligned purpose. When one individual deliberately sets out to harm a senior citizen, it can take the form of any of the four types of abuse listed above: physical abuse, emotional abuse, sexual abuse, or financial abuse.

Nursing home neglect is distinct from nursing home abuse in that it occurs when a nursing home employee or staff member does nothing to prevent the resident from suffering harm due to their inaction. Negligence may not be deliberate, yet it can cause major harm or even death to the elderly patients of a nursing home.

Types of Nursing Home Neglect and Abuse:

Physical Abuse:

When physically neglected, people are deprived of food, warmth, shelter, and a clean environment, all of which are essential to their survival and sense of self-worth. When an elderly patient of a nursing home experiences physical hurt, discomfort, or impairment due to mistreatment or neglect, this is considered physical abuse.  Some examples of physical abuse are manipulation, which causes harm, and physiological ignorance. Nursing home staff are only permitted to employ restraints in emergencies and for brief periods. Long-term constraint use has been linked to decreased muscle tone, bone mass, and other adverse health effects. Those who abuse residents in nursing homes are usually staff employees. 

Neglect of Personal Hygiene:

An example of this might be a nursing home that provides inadequate assistance with basic hygiene tasks like brushing a resident’s teeth, doing laundry, or bathing. Residents with poor hygiene may have an unkempt appearance and wear unclean clothing.

Neglect of Elderly Patients’ Emotions at Nursing Facilities:

Nursing home neglect on the emotional front can cause harm to senior residents in the same way physical neglect might. Neglecting a resident emotionally can occur when their emotional needs aren’t met, such as when they aren’t given opportunities to interact with loved ones. Due to the prevalence of neurocognitive illnesses like Alzheimer’s and dementia among the older population, emotional neglect can have devastating effects on the resident’s mental and physical health.

Medical Neglect:

When caregivers at a nursing home fail to diagnose, treat, and monitor residents’ health adequately, this is known as “medical neglect.” Consequences include:

  • Poor treatment for diabetes.
  • The development of bedsores and infections.
  • The impossibility of moving around freely.

Sexual Abuse:

As the term implies, sexual abuse refers to sexual encounters that did not have the consent of both parties. Sadly, this is a common form of abuse towards the elderly. Bruises on the breasts or genital areas and the appearance of sexually transmitted diseases for no apparent reason are common indicators of sexual assault.


Taking legal action and reporting nursing home neglect and abuse may be necessary if you or a loved one has been neglected. The law safeguards the rights of the elderly and demands that their fundamental needs always be met. The employees at a nursing home are there to help the residents in whatever way they can. The elder’s suffering can be ended, and the healing process can begin if indicators of suspected abuse or neglect are recognized and treated.

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