One in every ten Americans 60 years and older experiences some form of elder abuse, according to the National Council on Aging. Such situations may include neglect, emotional or physical abuse, withholding of financial resources, isolation, or deprivation of essential needs such as food and medicine. Identifying signs of such abuse is the first step in seeking assistance and protecting a vulnerable senior.
Home care agencies in Westport agree that one of the most common signs of elder abuse is increased or sudden secrecy. This can include avoiding certain personal topics, refusing to let others see emails, or suddenly getting more calls from the same person.
The abuser often seeks to form a co-dependent relationship by convincing a senior that they’re the only one they can trust. Signs of such an arrangement can include a slow withdrawal from social situations and increased isolation.
Lack of Upkeep
A possible sign of some type of financial abuse, which can come in the form of a family member making an elderly loved one feel guilty if they don’t help them, is a sudden lack of upkeep. This may include canceling yard services, not going to regular hair appointments, or settling for lower-quality products.
Change in Attitude
Biological changes that occur with age can create a change in how a senior sees things over time, but a sudden change in natural attitude or mood is different. If an elderly loved one is being consistently subjected to some form of abuse, they may become increasingly pessimistic or exhibit a sense of hopelessness.
Sudden Closeness with One Person
Most families have some members who are rarely a part of gatherings and who keep their distance from everyone. When such a person suddenly gets chummy with your elderly loved one, it should at least be a red flag. Another telltale sign of this type of abuse is efforts by this person to discourage contact with other family members and friends.
The first step in protecting your loved one is choosing a home care agency that conducts extensive background checks and regular visits to monitor the quality of care your loved one is receiving. At Home Care Assistance, not only do we do both, we also ensure all caregivers are licensed, bonded, and insured to further protect clients and their families. For more information about our care services, including live-in, hourly, and respite care Westport families can trust, give us a call at 203-955-1915 and schedule a free in-home consultation.