At present, in the United States, there are an estimated 1.5 million elderly people living in nursing homes. Many nursing homes offer high-quality service. There are others who may be short-staffed and may be struggling to cope with meeting the needs of their elderly residents. It can be frustrating to learn that your elderly relative is not receiving the care that they were promised.
Please discuss any concerns you have with staff. It may be due to a lack of people on shift to manage the needs of the residents. With that in mind, here are some key warning signs of poor elderly care, which you can keep an eye out for.
Noticeable Changes in Their Appearance or Attitude
Injuries can occur, especially in the elderly. But if they cannot be explained clearly and are happening very frequently, this needs to be investigated. There are many facilities, like Linwood nursing home, which will always report falls to relatives of the family. If falls are not reported, this is a red flag. If your loved one has a noticeable change in their emotional state, it could be caused by the lack of care that they are receiving.
Dehydration or Malnutrition
It is a basic level of care that needs to be addressed. All nursing homes should be feeding and hydrating their residents. But if an elderly relative is not drinking or eating enough, this does not mean that the staff is not trying. It may indicate an underlying health issue. If you notice a drop in your loved one’s weight or signs of dehydration, ask your loved one about the underlying causes. If they cannot provide you with this information, talk to the staff.
Many elderly residents of care homes cannot properly clean themselves and have to rely on the nursing staff to assist them with hygiene. If their hygiene is a bit lackluster, this can be due to staff not giving them the services that they require. Lack of hygiene can point to a lack of training, understaffing, or signs of abuse. But always ensure that this is explored if you suspect it.
It is quite common for people who have lowered mobility to fall and the staff at the nursing home should report any of these to you. If there is an increase in the number of times that your loved one is falling and becoming injured, this can be due to a lack of safety assessments or other issues which need to be explored legally.
There are older people who suffer from incontinence. This does not necessarily point to poor care. However, if there is an increased number of these, this can be a sign that they are not getting the care they require. If there are instances, such as an increase in urinary tract infections, this can be due to the nursing home staff not helping your family member to be mobile regularly. This can have serious complications. Always discuss these issues with the nursing staff.