General Signs of Nursing Home Abuse

There are many reasons that elderly residents in facilities suffer nursing home abuse and neglect.  Under federal and Florida regulation, nursing homes œmust promote care for residents in a manner and in an environment that maintains or enhances each resident’s dignity and respect in full recognition of his or her individuality. Nursing home employees are  often low-paid, overworked, and poorly trained. Sometimes the problem occurs when a nursing home owner tries to cut corners by skimping on staff or training. The other problem is that some elderly people are either unable or in some cases unwilling to complain. We’ve stressed in previous blogs on the importance of vigilance to prevent neglect when your loved one is in a nursing home or assisted living facility.
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Nursing home abuse and neglect can result in a variety of injuries and potentially fatal medical conditions. Undue pain, abandonment, and premature death should not be part of the nursing home experience.  Here’s a quick, simple checklist of major signs that could indicate your loved one is receiving poor treatment:

  • unusual bruising or bleeding
  • open wounds,  bed sores or cuts
  • burns and abrasions
  • sudden and unexplained change in weight
  • soiling, poor hygiene, smell of urine or feces
  • infections
  • loss of hair
  • torn, stained, or bloody clothing or bedding

Less obvious signs may consist of:

  • listlessness or unresponsiveness
  • infantile or other strange behaviors
  • physical or emotional withdrawal
  • disappearance of personal items
  • sudden and unusual financial transactions

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Please Note: These nursing home abuse warning signs are not presented in ranking order. All are equally serious and warrant further investigation.  Please visit for more information regarding elder abuse. Other sources include: &
How To Report Adult Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation
By Phone: Call Florida Abuse Hotline at 1-800-96-ABUSE (1-800-962-2873). Press 2 to report suspected abuse, neglect or exploitation of the elderly or a vulnerable adult. This toll free number is available 24/7.
TDD (Telephone Device for the Deaf): 1-800-453-5145

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