In Elder Abuse – Part 1: Defining Elder Abuse, we defined elder abuse and identified typical abusers. In this series we are going to explore warning signs of elder abuse and how to prevent it from happening.
SYMPTOMS OF ELDER ABUSE:
While elder abuse can take many forms, there are some warning signs that indicate potential abuse.
- Slap marks, bruises, broken bones
- Burns or blisters
- Bedsores, poor hygiene, weight loss
- Withdrawal from normal activities
- Change in alertness
- Any unusual behavior
- Sudden changes in finances and accounts (altered wills & trusts, unusual bank withdrawals, loan or gift checks written, etc.)
ELDER ABUSE PREVENTION:
Educating seniors, caregivers and family members is important for elder abuse prevention. If your elder family member is living in a long-term care facility, report any abuse immediately if suspected. If you are the elder, stay safe by following these tips:
- Take care of yourself and seek help for any health concerns.
- Stay active in the community and connected with family and friends.
- Make sure you have a living will and power of attorney that addresses health care decisions now.
- Have your own phone and do not give out personal information over the phone.
- Educate yourself/attend support groups regarding domestic violence services.
- Urge family members with drug, alcohol and depression concerns to seek professional help.
- If you suspect you are being abused, report it immediately!
REPORTING ELDER ABUSE:
If an older adult is in immediate, life-threatening danger, call 911. Anyone who suspects that an older adult is being mistreated should contact a local Adult Protective Services office, Long-Term Care Ombudsman, or police. NCEA describes various scenarios and ways to Get Help, and more information is available from the Eldercare Locator online or by calling 1-800-677-1116.
Contact Gerstenberger Law at (770) 920-7722 regarding legal issues and your specific situation.
The information found on the Gerstenberger Law site is for educational purposes only. Your situation and the situation of others are unique and more complex. This is neither legal advice nor to be considered legal advice. Contact us for advice about your specific situation.