As you researched various nursing homes in Illinois, you likely hoped to find just the right place where your aging mother or father would feel comfortable and well cared for in his or her golden years. If you live nearby, you may have felt somewhat at ease that at least you'd be able to visit often and check in to see how things are going.
Being the adult child of an elderly parent in a nursing home can be quite challenging, as you have a job and a family you're responsible for; yet, you want to spend as much time with your mother or father as possible, too. You understand there's no such thing as a perfect nursing home, but you want to be as sure as you can that you and your loved one have chosen a good, safe place.
Know the signs of trouble
Even after your mother or father has moved into a nursing home, there is no law saying it must be a permanent location. If, at any time, you determine a particular residence is not a good fit for your loved one, you can change residences. If you believe your parent has suffered an injury or illness because of neglect or abuse, you can take immediate action against those deemed liable. The following list includes signs of possible nursing abuse:
- If you notice that interactions between your loved one and a particular staff member or members seem tense or strained, it may be a sign of trouble.
- Older people may indeed become prone to bumping themselves or even bruising. However, if you notice any sign of injury on your parent's body and are not satisfied with the explanation you receive when you inquire about it, this would definitely warrant further investigation.
- If your loved one's sleep patterns or appetite appears disrupted, it is worth asking questions to help determine the cause, especially if you suspect some type of nursing negligence.
- If your parent exhibits signs of emotional trauma, such as repetitive tapping, rocking back and forth, or mood swings, you may want to look into the situation to find out if a particular incident or ongoing situation is causing him or her to be upset.
Placing your loved one in the care of professional nursing staff members takes a certain amount of trust. That does not mean, however, that you have to simply sit back and do nothing if you suspect your family member is being neglected or abused. You can investigate the matter and take any steps necessary to rectify a problem.
Sadly, some nursing home residents have suffered repeated abuses in Illinois and other states when loved ones or other visitors failed to notice the warning signs of abuse. If you remain alert and pay close attention to what you see and hear when you visit your parent, you may be able to help your loved one when he or she needs you most.