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What should you do if you suspect elder abuse

Many will put their elderly loved ones in some type of assisted living situation. This to ensure their safety and prevent them from accidents that could occur without the supervision of a reliable third party. However, sometimes because of the often more vulnerable nature of the elderly, they can be subject to various types of abuse. Abuse is not only concerning but also a heartbreaking situation. So, it is important to know what to look for and how to react if you suspect something isn’t quite right.

There are multiple types of abuse that the elderly can be subjected to as detailed by the Louisiana Department of Health. This includes physical, emotional, mental, and financial abuse. Physical abuse can include actions such as hitting, pulling, pinching, or anything else that causes unnecessary physical pain. Signs of this can include but are not limited to, bruising and cuts or scrapes. Physical abuse can also include failing to provide necessary care to your loved one. This can include proper nutrition, medical care, and a safe and comfortable quality of life. Signs of this type of abuse can include living conditions that seem inadequate, the appearance of being malnourished, and a lack of personal hygiene and upkeep.

Emotional abuse can be just as taxing. This can comprise of threats, unwanted teasing, intimidation, isolation, or harassment of any kind that causes distress to the victim. Signs of this include the institution discouraging visitation and withdrawn behavior when visiting.

Finally, there is financial abuse. This when the money or property of the elderly are exploited without their permission. Signs of this can be similar to physical abuse as lack of funds may prevent your loved one from providing necessary self-care and nourishment. It can also result in more dramatic signals such as a lack of utilities in their place of residence.

In Louisiana, The Adult Protective Services Reporting Law necessitates that anyone who suspects or confirms elder abuse report it to the authorities. Moreover, you and your loved one may want to seek the advice of an attorney. It is possible to get needed financial compensation and hold the person or institution accountable for the abuse that your loved one has endured.


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