If you're an adult child of an aging parent, you might encounter challenges as you help your mother or father transition to an assisted living lifestyle. Certain signs could suggest that a nursing home environment might be better than independent living for your family member. It's understandable that such transitions often spark emotional, logistical and even financial issues.
You'll no doubt review New York nursing homes before choosing a new residence for your loved one. There's no way to fully guarantee that a particular facility will have everything your parent needs. No nursing home is perfect, but every facility is legally bound to adhere to state laws and accepted safety standards when providing daily care for your family member.
Signs of trouble
You can't be with your parent 24/7. You can, however, pay close attention to his or her surroundings when you visit the nursing home where he or she resides. The following list includes issues that warrant further investigation to rule out nursing home abuse in a particular situation:
- Your loved one should be as emotionally, physically and mentally healthy as possible, according to his or her current medical and mental health condition. Any change that you find out of the ordinary is worthy of attention.
- Did you show up unexpectedly to visit your loved one and find him or her alone in a hallway or outdoors? This is a definite sign of possible nursing home negligence.
- If your parent exhibits agitation, fear or anxiety when a particular caregiver is nearby, it definitely warrants an inquiry.
- Has your loved one suffered injury? If you notice a laceration, bruise, swelling, bed sore or any other physical injury, you have a right to know exactly when and how it happened. If you're not satisfied with the explanation officials provide, it's always best to further investigate the situation.
- Any sign of trouble sleeping, lack of appetite, sudden or unexplained weight loss, or other health-related problems suggest something is not right concerning your loved one's current condition. While there may be a logical, underlying medical cause for the symptoms, it may also be an alert that abuse is taking place.
- If your parent appears disheveled or lacking personal hygiene when you visit, it's understandable that you would want to immediately bring the issue to nursing home administrators' attention.
Your loved one has a right to expect high quality care. Nursing home workers have stressful jobs and often work long hours. There is no excuse, however, for mistreating patients for any reason. If you suspect nursing home abuse is causing your mother or father emotional, mental, physical or financial injury, you can help protect his or her rights by seeking appropriate guidance and support to help you investigate and resolve the issue.