Few decisions are more difficult than choosing to move an aging parent into a nursing home. While you can likely depend on nursing home employees to provide effective care for your elderly loved one, you must realize that nursing home neglect happens. In fact, about 10% of Americans over 60 experience some type of neglect or abuse. Even worse, when abuse happens, an individual’s risk of death may increase by as much as 300%.
There is no such thing as standard nursing home neglect. That is, your loved one’s neglect may involve poor hygiene, incorrect medication, substandard living conditions or something else. Often, though, bedsores are an early indicator of nursing home neglect. If you have an elderly loved one in a long-term care facility, you should know a few things about the condition.
Generally, bedsores form when a patient has mobility limitations. That is, when those in nursing homes are unable to move, they tend to remain in one position for an extended period of time. Bedsores occur because of pressure to a certain area. Commonly, individuals in nursing homes develop bedsores on their hips, buttocks, elbows, ankles and feet.
While bedsores tend to occur in immobile patients, some nursing home residents have a greater risk of developing them. For example, individuals with autoimmune disorders may have an increased likelihood of forming bedsores. Also, overweight and diabetic patients tend to form bedsores faster than other individuals.
Physicians use five stages to describe the severity of bedsores. Still, bedsores can progress from a small red spot to a major sore surprisingly quickly. If professionals do not regularly move and clean patients in a nursing home, the condition may advance rapidly. As such, if you notice a forming bedsore, you must take steps to ensure caretakers address the problem immediately.
While bedsores may seem like a minor condition, they can become deadly. Fortunately, it is usually possible to prevent bedsores altogether. If you think your aging mother or father has bedsores, you must act quickly both to promote recovery and to investigate other types of possible nursing home abuse. If you or your family member has been the victim of nursing home neglect, contact Brewer & Giggenbach for legal advice.