Protecting the Elderly From Abuse – June is Elder Abuse Awareness Month

There are over ½ million reports of elder abuse each year. Can you believe that?
What are we missing? Why is this happening? How could anyone want to abuse our elders?

Abuse is not always done with force. Often times it can be neglect, which can include not keeping the elder safe, not giving proper medical care and not bathing or cleaning our elders when they need it. That said, abuse can happen anywhere. Nursing homes are commonly on the front page of the news regularly, but abuse and neglect can happen right in your elder’s home too.

Do you know the signs of elder abuse or neglect?

Are your elder’s glasses broken? Clothes filthy? Are they losing weight for a non-medical reason? Are they bruised due to other issues than normal? Do you see signs of restraint? Marks or bruising on the wrists? Bedsores? These are all signs of physical abuse.

Another form of abuse can be financial. Is your loved one’s bank account declining? Are there mysterious amounts of money unaccounted for?

Isolation is an ongoing issue as well. Shielding loved ones or making them withdraw from the world without letting them see outside, taking them places and continuing communications with their peers, can be devastating and also a form of abuse.

If you notice any of these warning signs, consistently, contact an Elder Law Attorney immediately. It can be very difficult for our loved ones to speak out; They are vulnerable and may feel threatened. These things are hard to admit and say out loud which is why keeping open communication and constantly asking questions is very important to the well-being of our elders.

Remember, not everyone who abuses and/or neglects can seem bad. Most of the time abuse and neglect come from pressure after caring for someone who is weak. While it’s no excuse, the responsibility often becomes too much and caregivers can end up lashing out.

We, those who care for these wonderful souls, need to speak up for those who can’t. June aims to focus attention on the problems of emotional, financial and physical abuse of elders. Educate yourself and those around you, and if you find there is an issue, please contact The Kabb Law Firm at 216-991-KABB. Also visit our website for more info www.kabblaw.com. Our difference is care.