Placing your aging loved one in a nursing home can be a difficult decision. If you don't have the ability to provide the type of medical care and supervision your loved one needs, a nursing home may be the best place for your loved one to ensure that he or she remains safe and secure. One of the primary concerns that family members may have when placing an aging loved one in a nursing home is elder abuse.
Here are three things that you can do after placing your own loved one in a nursing home to ensure that you are able to identify potential elder abuse.
1. Visit your loved one often.
Individuals who prey on the elderly often target those aging persons who have very little contact with friends or family members. When no one comes to visit an aging person in a nursing home, it's easy for someone to manipulate and abuse that person.
By making it a point to visit your loved one regularly (or to send a friend in your place if you are unable to make a regular visit), you will be able to spot signs of physical abuse quickly and you can take the necessary steps to remove your loved one from danger.
2. Take depression seriously.
Being placed in a nursing home can be difficult for your aging loved one. The loss of independence and the move to unfamiliar surroundings could cause depression to set in.
While it may be normal for your loved one to exhibit signs of loneliness and despair immediately after moving into a nursing home, prolonged symptoms of depression could be a sign that your loved one is being victimized. If you notice that you loved one is becoming more and more withdrawn, start asking probing questions about the quality of his or her care.
3. Invest in a hidden camera.
Nanny cams are popular among parents looking to ensure their children are receiving proper care, and you can apply this same principle to the care of your loved one by investing in a hidden camera that will allow you to keep an eye on your loved one when you are not physically present.
Cameras can be housed inside common objects like picture frames or pens so they don't raise suspicion. If you invest in a hidden camera that transmits a live feed to a cloud-based site, you can check on your loved one remotely. A hidden camera will give you the opportunity to identify alarming behavior exhibited by staff members at your loved one's nursing home, and remove your loved one from a potentially harmful situation immediately.
Being able to recognize when your loved one is being victimized will help you prevent ongoing elder abuse and make your loved one's nursing home experience a more positive one. For more information or assistance, contact a nursing home abuse attorney in your area.