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Common Types of Nursing Home Abuse

It’s hard to think that anyone could intentionally harm an elderly person in any way. Unfortunately, cases of elder abuse are far too common, including in nursing homes. 

Nursing home abuse can be difficult to detect from your loved one, and even harder for them to report due to things like memory loss and fear of the perceived consequences. 

If you suspect that someone you love is undergoing abuse in a nursing home facility, consider liaising with a personal injury lawyer in Utah to investigate the situation and get legal guidance. Here are some common types of nursing home abuse to look out for.

Sexual Abuse

Nursing home sexual abuse occurs when a member of the staff, a visitor, or a fellow resident has non-consented sexual contact with an elderly person. Sadly, perpetrators of such acts mostly prey on individuals who are nonverbal or with memory loss, making it easy to conceal the abuse.

Sexual abuse in a nursing home can take the forms of rape, assault, sexual battery, unwanted fondling, sodomy, and being forced to undress, among others. 

Emotional Abuse

Emotional or psychological abuse in a nursing home can be any intentional verbal or nonverbal actions that inflict mental distress, fear, or pain. This type of abuse can also occur in connection with other forms of elder abuse, like neglect and sexual assault.

Some of the common signs to look out for with emotional abuse include sudden isolation, unexplained mood changes, changes in eating or sleeping patterns, and fear.  

Financial Abuse

Due to possible memory loss and other cognitive issues, elderly persons are a common target for financial abuse. In a nursing home, this can happen in numerous ways, such as stealing valuable property, charging for services not rendered, elder fraud, coercion to change a will, forced signing of a document, or forging signatures. 

If you notice unexplained transactions or transfers in your loved one’s bank account, they might be experiencing nursing home financial abuse.

Physical Abuse

Physical abuse is the second-most prevalent form of elder abuse in nursing homes. Inflicting pain and injuries intentionally or unwanted physical restraint on a nursing home resident are all forms of physical abuse. 

Common signs of physical abuse are unexplained injuries, including dislocations, bruises, cuts, fractures, and so on. A nursing home staff may claim that the injuries are from clumsiness or falls, but you don’t have to take their word. Speak with a lawyer to assess the situation and determine if there’s a need for legal action.

You’ll also want to take immediate steps to protect your loved one’s safety; in the worst cases, physical abuse can lead to untimely death, and you want to be sure your loved one isn’t in danger.


Neglect in a nursing home can either be general or medical. General neglect occurs when the facility or caregivers deny a resident their basic needs like food, water, comfort, clean clothing, safety, and so on. 

Medical neglect is the failure to provide required medical care or treatment. You can deduce neglect from things like untidy bedding, malnutrition, bedsores, developing secondary illnesses, and medication errors.

Consult with a Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer

Have you or someone you know suffered any of the above types of nursing home abuse or something similar? You can seek justice and relief by filing a civil claim against the individual abuser or a nursing home facility. Compensation can go a long way in getting the help needed to heal from such a traumatic experience. 

Get legal guidance from our nursing home abuse lawyers at Craig Swapp & Associates by calling 1-800-404-9000. You can also send us a message through the contact form below to request a free case review.  

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