No resident of a nursing home or assisted living facility deserves anything but the best possible care for their physical, psychological, and emotional needs every single day. Unfortunately, not every such facility in California lives up to the promises they make to future residents and their family members—and even worse, identifying when those promises are being broken can be a deceptively difficult task even for the most considerate and attentive individuals.
Knowing about common warning signs of nursing home abuse in California can be crucial to protecting a beloved resident’s physical, emotional, and even financial wellbeing. If you have questions about whether a particular incident or experience might indicate mistreatment, a compassionate nursing home abuse attorney could provide the guidance you might need to take prompt and effective action.
Possible Symptoms of Intentional Abuse in Nursing Homes
A knowledgeable attorney in California could explain the three categories of mistreatment found in nursing homes.
Physical violence is sadly not uncommon in certain nursing homes and similar facilities across the Golden State, especially in those that do not perform due diligence in only hiring qualified and compassionate staff members. However, part of what makes this kind of misconduct so insidious is the unique vulnerability of the people it directly harms—many nursing home residents are cognitively impaired to such a degree that they are incapable of informing family members what is happening to them, and even those who are not may be too frightened of future reprisal to report the abuse they are going through.
Because of that, it is often essential for friends and family of elder care facility residents to pay close attention to their loved one’s physical condition every time they visit, and ask follow-up questions with staff members about any injuries they notice.
Emotional abuse can leave noticeable marks as well, ranging from sudden changes in personality to a resident being uncharacteristically skittish or shy around a particular staff member, to even regressive behaviors like biting nails, sucking thumbs, and rocking back and forth.
Likewise, sudden changes in a resident’s financial affairs and/or estate plans could be warning signs of financial abuse, which could itself justify a nursing home mistreatment lawsuit in California.
Identifying Negligence in a California Nursing Home
It is worth emphasizing that negligence—in other words, mistreatment stemming from recklessness or carelessness rather than an intentional act— in a residential care home can have similar effects as abuse in some situations and radically different effects in others. For example, a resident falling and hurting themselves could be the fault of a staff member handling them too roughly or a lack of handrails in facility common areas. Either way, legal action might be possible against the facility in question.
Other possible warnings signs of neglect in California nursing homes include:
- Malnutrition and/or dehydration
- Bed sores and other infections
- Dirty linens, clothing, and/or living spaces
- Rapid gain/loss of weight
- Injuries caused by other unsupervised residents
- Failure to provide necessary medical treatment and/or medications
A motivated lawyer could review potential signs of neglect in an elder care facility and help determine whether intervention and/or legal action is warranted.
Consult a California Attorney about Warning Signs of Nursing Home Abuse
Learning that a loved one has experienced neglect or abuse from the people entrusted with their daily care can be a heartbreaking and overwhelming experience. However, it is possible to minimize the harm that this kind of treatment may cause by learning how to identify it in advance and taking action before it becomes especially severe.
A dedicated legal professional could offer further guidance about warning signs of nursing home abuse in California during a private consultation. Reach out today.