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How do I protect my parent against nursing home neglect?

| Dec 29, 2020 | Firm News

Dementia can take a while to develop and impact an individual’s abilities, often allowing your parents to stay at home – with a bit of help from their loved ones. However, when the symptoms and signs of dementia become more severe, caregiving at home might no longer be an option.

At this point, many families might start looking for assisted living facilities or nursing homes to ensure their loved one gets the care they need, but you have likely heard frightening stories of nursing home abuse or neglect.

This might lead you to wonder – how can I protect my loved one from this risk?

Evaluate your choices of nursing homes carefully

One important step you can take to protect your loved one is to make sure you choose a good nursing home to begin with. It can be helpful to:

  • Speak with your loved one and make a list of what you both want or need in a facility
  • Do your research, including checking the ratings and reviews of nursing homes
  • Know what risk factors to look for and determine what questions to ask

You want to ensure the nursing home you choose will meet your loved one’s needs and best interests. Reviewing your options proactively and thoughtfully can be critical to protect your loved one in the long run.

What if my loved one is in a nursing home already?

If your loved one is already housed in a nursing home or assisted living facility in South Dakota, how can you know if they are facing neglect?

When you visit with them – whether in person or over a video conference – observe them carefully. The first potential indications of nursing home neglect often manifest in changes to your loved one, including:

  1. Emotional changes: These could include symptoms of anxiety or depression, agitation or withdrawal. You should take considerable changes in your loved one’s personality or behavior seriously.
  2. Physical changes: This includes sudden, unexplained injuries, significant weight loss, weakness, bedsores or infections.

Even if you chose the best option available to you and the facility seems promising, it is critical to be on the lookout for any concerning changes in your loved one, so you can take action against the risks of neglect as soon as possible.