What Stops The Elderly From Reporting Abuse?
If you have a loved one in a nursing home, you may be concerned that they will become a victim of abuse or neglect. The concern is understanding, as nursing home abuse and neglect is often in the news. The only reassurance you may have is that you expect your family member to inform you if they become victim to such wrongful behavior. Unfortunately, elderly individuals in nursing homes often do not report abuse when it occurs. There are many reasons for this. Below, our Tampa nursing home abuse attorney explains what they are.
Shame and Guilt
Like so many other victims of abuse, elderly individuals in nursing homes often feel shame and guilt after they have suffered at the hands of another. They may think they deserved it because they did not cooperate with the staff member. Or, they may simply feel so embarrassed about the situation, they do not want anyone else to know about it.
Shame and guilt are some of the top reasons abuse is widely underreported, both inside and outside of nursing homes. If your loved one does not want to talk about the care they are receiving, or about certain staff members, it could be because they are feeling ashamed and guilty about what happened to them.
Lack of Mental Capacity
Many elderly individuals must stay in a nursing home because they suffer from serious conditions, such as Alzheimer’s. These conditions greatly affect a person’s mental capacity and when these vulnerable individuals are the victims of abuse and neglect, they may not even be aware of it. They may not understand that they are being treated disrespectfully, or that their needs are not being met. As such, they do not have the mental capacity to report it. In these situations, it is even more critical that loved ones know the signs of abuse, and how to prevent it from occurring.
Fear of Retaliation
Senior citizens are often worried that if they report the abuse and neglect they are experiencing, the staff members inside the nursing home will retaliate against them. They may fear that a staff member will only increase the severity and frequency of the abuse. If your loved one seems fearful around certain staff members, or they refuse to speak to you or engage in activities while certain people are around, it may mean that those individuals are being abusive or neglectful towards your family member.
Our Nursing Home Abuse Attorney in Tampa Can Help You Make Things Right
Regardless of whether your loved one informs you of nursing home and abuse, it is important to always watch for signs so you can report it, if necessary. At Kohn Law, our Tampa nursing home abuse attorney can help you determine if abuse is occurring and if so, put a stop to it so your family member is no longer at risk. If you suspect your loved one is not being treated properly in a long-term care facility, call us now at 813-428-8504 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation.