How To Spot Elder Abuse Before It’s Too Late

Elder abuse is a problem for many senior citizens who are in hospice care or nursing homes. Unfortunately, elder abuse is often difficult to recognize because the perpetrators spend so much time with the victims, who are afraid to speak out.

“Seniors in need of assistance are among the most vulnerable groups in our society,” said Thomas D. Bumgardner, Charlotte nursing home abuse attorney. “Because of this, it is my goal to educate the families of potential victims of the dangers that their loved ones may face in care facilities.”

There are several types of elder abuse, some more insidious than others. If you notice any sudden changes in personality or behavior in your loved one, it could be a sign of elder abuse.

Here are the three most common types of elder abuse and some helpful tips on how to spot it.

Physical Abuse

Physical abuse is any use of force against a senior by a caretaker. Some examples of this type of abuse include hitting, shoving or inappropriate use of restraints.

Signs of Physical Abuse:

1. Unexplained bruises or scars.

2. Broken eyeglasses.

3. Caregiver’s refusal to allow you to see the elder alone.

Emotional Abuse

Emotional abuse is the mistreatment of elders in a verbal way that causes emotional pain or distress.

Signs of Emotional Abuse:

1. Intimidation through yelling or threats.

2. Humiliation and ridicule.

3. Signs of emotional distress like rocking back and forth or being distant.


Elder neglect is a failure for a caretaker to fulfill their obligations, and is the most common form of elder abuse.

Signs of Neglect:

1. Unusual weight loss or dehydration

2. Untreated symptoms such as bed sores.

3. Dirty or unsafe living conditions.

If you suspect a loved one has been abused in a nursing facility, but they are unwilling to admit it, the best thing to do is to make sure that they understand you are on their side and will help them get out of that situation. Begin documenting any signs of abuse with pictures and descriptions with times and dates. Once you have collected necessary information, talk to your lawyer.

Trust a Compassionate Charlotte Elder Abuse Attorney

Thomas D. Bumgardner is a Charlotte nursing home abuse attorney with years of experience fighting for his client’s rights and winning fair compensation. If you or a loved one feel that nursing home abuse has been committed, give us a call to discuss your case for free – (704) 870-4779.