What Are 5 Types of Nursing Home Abuse and Which Are the Corresponding Symptoms You Can Identify It By?

A majority of elders in nursing homes who suffer the abuse of any form hardly talk about it to anyone. And if you’re not keen, you might not notice they’re being abused at all. You will be paying for the eldercare services and congratulating the staff for a job well done. Yet the truth is, your loved one is paining and suffering. Ouch! But if you’re keen, you should be able to notice specific symptoms of abuse and, perhaps, take the necessary steps. Here are 5 main types of nursing home abuses and the corresponding symptoms you can identify them by.

  1. Physical Abuse

Your loved one may be abused by use of some physical force causing pain, impairment, or bodily harm. Common physical abuses include slapping, pushing, biting, burning, kicking, or striking the victim. But how will you know? Well, you should be able to see bruises, open wounds, unexplained cuts, internal bleeding, welts, broken eyeglasses, lacerations, broken bones, or dislocations in your loved one. Now, what should you do to seek justice for your loved one? You need to consult an abuse lawyer to help and advise you on the necessary steps to follow.

  1. Sexual Abuse

The elderly persons cannot provide consent. Therefore, having any form of sexual contact with an elder is considered sexual abuse. Sexual abuse of the elderly includes sodomy, intercourse, sexual assault, or taking of pictures when they’re nude. You will know your loved one has suffered sexual abuse if you see torn or blood-stained underwear, vaginal or anal bleeding, genital or breast bruises, and unexplained STIs and genital infections. Should this happen, consult your personal injury/abuse law attorney to help you find justice for your loved one.

  1. Neglect

Your loved one can be denied the necessary care while in the facility. The responsible staff could at times fail to provide essential healthcare services to the elderly. The family could also play a part in this form of abuse by not paying for essential services. This will compromise the safety, lifestyle, hygiene, shelter, comfort, and meals of the elderly. Common symptoms of neglect include malnutrition, untreated bed sores, untreated health complications, and dehydration.

  1. Financial Abuse

There have been several cases of financial abuse of the elderly persons in nursing homes. Their assets or possessions could be used without their permission. This includes stealing their money and other possessions, making the elderly sign a document they do not understand, and making the elder pay for services already paid for. You will notice that the funds and some of the possessions of your loved one have disappeared, unexpected bank transactions, and substandard care given to them.

  1. Psychological Abuse

Your loved one can suffer distress, anguish, or pain as a result of verbal or non-verbal means. S/he can be verbally assaulted, humiliated, insulted, intimidated, socially isolated, harassed or threatened. How will you know your loved one has been psychologically abused? S/he will start developing unusual behavior and becomes emotionally upset and agitated. You will also notice that your loved one will become unresponsive, withdrawn, and not willing to communicate.


Abuse of the elderly is one of the main legal matters affecting the elderly persons in nursing homes. The victims hardly report such abuses and the abusers are more likely to go unpunished. But keen observation for possible symptoms is the key to finding justice for your loved one. Look out for possibilities of any of the abuses above by checking the respective symptoms. These are just the main forms of nursing home abuses but there are others which you can find in other relevant blogs.