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Emotional Abuse in Nursing Homes 

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    Emotional Abuse in Nursing Homes 

    It may be hard to believe that nursing home employees can emotionally abuse the seniors under their care. However, the sad truth is it is a common occurrence. When you and your family decided to place your loved one in the care of a nursing home you probably did your homework. You went through all the options and did your best to make sure that your elderly loved one was going to be taken care of. 

    The sad truth is there are often people who don’t care about working in nursing homes. Those people are a danger to your loved ones. Below is what you can use to learn about if your loved one has been a victim of emotional abuse in a nursing home. 

    Different Types of Emotional Abuse 

    When a caregiver or other resident even acts in a way to cause emotional pain and suffering to an elderly person it is emotional abuse. There are many ways that emotional abuse can present such as agitation, nervousness, fear, or sadness. Acts of emotional abuse can be unintentional when the abuser is lashing out from stress but it can also be intentional.  

    Verbal Abuse 

    Verbal abuse is easy to identify if you are nearby when it happens. However, it can also be hard if you aren’t there to catch it. It is characterized by verbal harassment, yelling, or emotional manipulations the abuser inflicts on the elderly. Here are some of the examples of verbal abuse that can happen: 

    • Yelling, shouting, or screaming 
    • Threatening and pretending to harm the patient
    • Intimidation
    • Naming-calling
    • Insulting or ridiculing the patient
    • Talking to the patient as if they were a child
    • Embarrassing the patient in front of others
    • Making the patient feel guilty or upset 
    • Scapegoating and blaming 

    Nonverbal Abuse 

    Nonverbal abuse is another form of emotional abuse. It is far harder to spot and can go unnoticed for a long time. Typically the goal of nonverbal abuse is to make the elderly patient feel isolated, helpless, and afraid. This behavior is seriously damaging both psychologically and emotionally for the elderly patient. Here are some examples of nonverbal abuse: 

    • Giving the patient the silent treatment
    • Terrorizing and pretending to cause physical harm
    • Ignoring the patient 
    • Isolating them from others
    • Priming the patient from talking to others or seeing family 
    • Restricting access to food, water, or the bathroom 
    • Treating the patient as if they were a child 
    • Taking away personal items

    Spotting emotional abuse is a hard task. What we know is that at least 2.5 million Americans suffer from elder abuse each year and it often goes undocumented for long periods of time. If you suspect your elderly loved one to be a victim of elder abuse then contact a nursing home injury lawyer like, Davis & Brusca, LLC, for more information about what you can do to help your loved one. 

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