Making The Complex

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Keep an eye out for these signs of elder abuse

It can be difficult to watch a loved one age, and perhaps even more so after learning that the elderly in Louisiana are particularly vulnerable to abuse. Understanding what elder abuse looks like may help put one’s mind at ease when evaluating care. However, it can also serve the more important purpose of identifying and stopping elder abuse.

Elder physical abuse

Physical abuse among the elderly may involve hitting or shaking victims. Since the elderly have unique needs, physical abuse might also manifest in unique ways that are not as easily identifiable, such as when abusers inappropriately restrain, force feed or improperly administer medication to victims. Just a few of the many signs of physical abuse in the elderly include:

  • Skin discoloration
  • Bruises
  • Sprains
  • Recurring injuries
  • Poorly treated injuries
  • Poor hygiene
  • Weight loss
  • Unexplained fearfulness

Financial abuse

Abuse can also be financial in nature and occurs when someone uses an elderly person’s assets illegally or improperly. Financial abusers may pressure victims to sign new estate planning documents or withdraw money from financial accounts. If an elderly person begins talking about a new best friend while also experiencing sudden financial trouble, it could be an indication that he or she is being financially exploited.

People in Louisiana deserve to live their final years in peace and dignity. Elder abuse robs them of that opportunity. Getting the right help for victims may help restore some of that lost dignity, which is why many families choose to pursue legal action on behalf of loved ones after discovering indications of abuse.


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