Signs of physical abuse of seniors with dementia at memory care facilities often include both bodily injuries and notable changes in personality or behavior. Victims may display different signs based on their condition and the circumstances of their abuse, and certain behavioral responses may mimic the symptoms of dementia. This can make it difficult for families and friends to recognize the mistreatment of their loved ones, who may struggle to recognize the abuse themselves.
After the discovery of the abuse, families may have the option to hold the memory care facility accountable for the harm of their loved one. They may pursue compensation either through an insurance claim or a personal injury lawsuit.
Signs of Physical Abuse of Seniors with Dementia at Memory Care Facilities
As the National Institute on Aging (NIA) explains, people with dementia may become irritable or aggressive toward others because of their condition. Some of the symptoms of dementia include confusion and memory loss, and those who suffer from it often cannot effectively control their feelings and emotions.
Especially in understaffed facilities or without the appropriate training, caregivers may not know how to handle outbursts and lash back at residents with dementia in an attempt to subdue them. This unacceptable resolution often constitutes abuse, and families may recognize some of the red flags when visiting victims.
Some of the more obvious signs of physical abuse include visible evidence on the victim’s bodies, such as welts, bruises, burns, cuts, scratches, and sores resulting from physical assault or unlawful restraint. Accidents can happen, but families should bring up any concerns about their loved one’s physical condition to memory care facility staff immediately to confirm the cause of any injuries.
According to the NIA, some of the signs of abuse may also appear in the victim’s behavior. If you notice that your loved one suddenly becomes withdrawn or agitated, fears certain staff members, has trouble sleeping or eating, or displays other signs of trauma, they may suffer from abuse.
If your loved one has experienced physical abuse at their memory care facility, they will likely experience it again unless someone steps in to help. After you report the abuse, a lawyer can help you pursue financial recovery.
People with Dementia May Have Trouble Communicating Their Concerns
Because dementia affects the neurological pathways in the brain, it can make it difficult for individuals with the condition to express their feelings and concerns. It can also make it more challenging for them to process their environment or recall events, which makes them more susceptible to abuse. Even if they do have an awareness of their mistreatment, their dementia may limit their ability to relay the information to family, friends, and authorities who can help them.
Over time, physical abuse in memory care facilities can lead to serious health concerns that may require hospitalization, and this may negatively affect the victim’s financial stability, as well. Families can advocate for their loved ones by recognizing the abuse, reporting it, and seeking legal assistance to recover financial losses.
For a free legal consultation, call (800) 794-0444
Memory Care Facility Residents Have Rights Under Federal Law
According to the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE), residents of memory care facilities have certain rights, including the right to:
- Freedom from all forms of abuse
- Accommodation of all personal, medical, and social needs
- Receive treatment with dignity and respect
- Communicate openly without the threat of retaliation
- Participate in their own care plans
- Remain informed of any changes in the organizational structure or operations of the facility
If your loved one suffered physical abuse, you may have the opportunity to pursue financial awards from the facility for violating your loved one’s rights and causing them harm.
A Lawyer Can Help You if Your Loved One Has Suffered Physical Abuse at a Memory Care Facility
If you have noticed signs of physical abuse of a senior with dementia at a memory care facility, the lawyers at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm can investigate your case, establish liability, and help you pursue compensation for your loved one’s injuries. We work on a contingency fee basis, so we do not charge you anything unless we achieve financial awards for you. Contact our legal team today at (800) 794-0444 to speak with us about your case.