Nursing Home Abuse: Denied The Basics
You would not normally think that a person, particularly an older person placed in a nursing home, would fall victim to third-world problems like malnutrition and dehydration. However, some loved ones have learned the horrifying truth. To find out how you can take action against a nursing home that neglected your loved one, read below.
Older People are Vulnerable
Not only are older people more likely to be afflicted with malnutrition and dehydration, but they may also be mistreated and denied adequate food and water. Loved ones should watch for the below signs of malnutrition and dehydration:
- Unexplained weight loss
- Dark urine
- Unusual fatigue
- Sparse urination
- Feeling cold
- Dry mouth
What Causes Malnutrition and Dehydration?
Sometimes, older adults cannot take in proper amounts of food and water because of medical conditions. Difficulty swallowing is common in older people. Other common issues that may result in malnutrition and dehydration include:
- Lack of taste and smell
- Not remembering to drink water regularly
- Unresolved dental issues, such as poorly fitting dentures
- Medications that lessen the appetite
No matter the cause, a doctor should be consulted. Your loved one might benefit from taking vitamins and minerals, changes in food choices, medication changes, and the treatment of underlying conditions.
A Red Flag of Abuse
Unfortunately, those who depend on others for their care in a nursing home may be suffering from a lack of proper care. Nursing home residents may have their nutritional needs unmet due to improper staff training, poorly staffed units, and more. They may need help with their meals and drinking but they are not receiving that care. Your loved one has a right to good care and if they don't receive it, take action. Once you have ruled out medical conditions and other things that might cause nutritional deficits and dehydration, take action to find the source of the problem. In many cases, your loved one is being neglected by the people charged with delivering their care.
What Loved Ones Can Do
Speak first with the home administrator about your concerns. However, also consider speaking to someone that can do more investigating to determine whether abuse is happening. Consult with a personal injury lawyer about your concerns. Your lawyer has ways of getting to the bottom of the abuse while also gaining proof. You should also contact law enforcement about the neglect.
Older adults can become very ill in a short time if their basic needs are not being met. Speak to a personal injury law firm like Smith Law Firm, LLC to find out more.