Unfortunately, elder abuse can take place at any time, and it can happen to anyone, and that’s why it is important to be aware of it. Here are a few warning signs, courtesy of National Center on Elder Abuse, to keep a watchful eye:
- Unexplained bruises or welts on their body.
- Loved ones becoming isolated or not allowed to contact family.
- Caregiver is overly controlling or verbally abusive.
- Bruises around pelvic and genitalia areas, or unexplained sexually transmitted diseases.
- Sudden changes in loved one’s finances.
- Ulcers from not being moved around properly, malnutrition and lack of basic hygiene.
- Unexplained withdrawal from normal activities, a sudden change in alertness, and unusual depression may be indicators of emotional abuse.
- Bedsores, unattended medical needs, poor hygiene and unusual weight loss.
- Behavior such as belittling, threats, and other uses of power and control by spouses are indicators of verbal or emotional abuse.
- Strained or tense relationships, frequent arguments between the caregiver and elderly person.
If you notice changes in a senior’s personality or behavior, you should start to question what is going on. It’s important to alert others if you have suspicions and to retain an attorney.