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How can you spot elder abuse?

On Behalf of | Sep 8, 2020 | Nursing Home Negligence |

Getting the proper healthcare for your loved ones can be constant work, especially when the odds are stacked against you. Kentucky isn’t winning many awards when it comes to a vulnerable older generation, and it may fall to you to make sure your family is getting the help they need.

The elderly population in Kentucky is the least likely to be healthy across the entire country. They’re also tied for the second-lowest life expectancy at the age of 65. This all means extra effort is necessary from those with older loved ones here, and knowing when facilities aren’t meeting standards can be essential.

Lacking care

Neglect and abuse can deal serious blows to those who are already having trouble. While nursing homes and long-term care facilities have to meet strict guidelines, not every case comes under scrutiny. When it falls to your shoulders to make sure nothing happens to your loved ones, you’ll need to be able to spot the signs early.


Intentional pain usually fits the bill for abuse, but that can cover a wide range of actions. The groups are most easily broken down into three categories:

  • Physical: This type of abuse doesn’t have to be out-right hitting. Aggressive handling during medicating, rough transfers to a bed and force-feeding can all create trauma. Be on the lookout for obvious evidence like bruises and broken bones.
  • Psychological: Intimidation, seclusion and berating can leave a resident hurting, though it might be hard to identify without physical evidence. Shying away from assistance or an unexplained uneasiness with certain employees could point to mental harm.
  • Sexual: From improper touching to coercion, these acts can leave a wake of signs. Unexplained injuries to sensitive areas, fear of workers or nurses and certain infections can all indicate  abuse at the hands of a caretaker.


While not always as intentional as abuse, neglect can still count as a crime. Understaffing, poor management and a lack of training can lead to many symptoms:

  • Consistent dehydration
  • Weight loss
  • Bedsores
  • Poor hygiene
  • Trouble moving about

While accidents do happen and health can deteriorate in older family members, it’s important to note ongoing distinctions and unexplained ailments. If you find that your loved one is suffering from abuse or negligent care, contact the attorneys at Satterley & Kelley PLLC for a free consultation today.


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