The decision to have your parent stay in a nursing home is likely not one you took lightly. After research and visitations, you may feel satisfied that the nursing home you've chosen will take good care of your parent. That's why it can be so disheartening to suspect that the care you expected may not be what they are receiving. Watch out for these three things; they could be indicators that they are the victim of neglect or abuse.

Drastic Change in Disposition

It is common that your parent would have mixed feelings about moving into a nursing home. They might have wanted to remain with you or they may be unpleased with moving into a room when they used to live in their own house. However, if you notice that your parent has become withdrawn and unwilling to communicate, you need to find out a way. Did someone say something to them they found unpleasant? Are they being bullied or yelled at? These questions can be hard to answer if your parent has dementia or Alzheimer's disease, so do some digging and talk with aides to see what you can find out.

Pressure Ulcers

Also called bed sores, pressure ulcers can develop when someone is sedentary or confined to their bed. People in that condition must be turned and repositioned every few hours to avoid constant pressure on the same skin points, as it can ultimately cause skin tears that develop into serious and deep sores. Bedsores are often on areas of the skin that can become sweaty, such as the back, bottom, and feet.

If your parent is not very mobile and had no skin problems before they were admitted to the nursing home, they should be unlikely to develop pressure ulcers. If you are told there is one or you see it yourself, you need to ask questions. Find out how often your parent is being repositioned and ask to speak to a nurse who can speak to you about how such a sore might have occurred. Watch for signs that the bedsore is worsening and getting larger instead of getting better; they may need additional medical care.

Weight Loss

One of the reasons you might have selected a particular nursing home is that they offered food that would be palatable to your parent. If you start to notice that they are losing weight anyway, you have to know why. It could be that they aren't given enough time to eat or that they are not being offered the right kinds of food. They might have started to have trouble swallowing but none of the staff have taken notice. It is important to ensure that your parent is getting the nutrition they require, so a discussion with either a nurse on duty or your parent's doctor is in order.


These signs might signal that your parent is having some trouble in the nursing home. If you suspect that your parent is being mistreated, talk with a nursing home lawyer about what legal steps you may be able to take. To learn more, contact a law firm like Reed Law