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Signs Of Elder Abuse

  1. Unexplained physical injuries which suddenly appear, including cuts, bruises, scratches and even broken bones.

  2. Serious, persistent bed sores. Proper medical care can prevent bed sores from becoming severe. However, the development of serious and persistent sores could be a warning sign of inadequate or negligent care.

  3. Sudden or chronic weight loss unrelated to their medical condition. Withholding of food is a common abusive behavior. While it could be part of a larger health or disease issue, sudden or chronic weigh loss must be addressed quickly.

  4. Signs of emotional abuse such as psychological withdrawal, cringing, unwillingness to talk. Use of verbal threats, intimidation, forced isolation, demeaning treatment or coercion constitutes abuse.

  5. Signs of sexual abuse such as suspicious physical injuries or bleeding in intimate areas. The "discovery" of unexplained infections, or even the development of STDs, is a serious warning sign of abuse.

  6. Unsanitary personal living conditions, including poor personal hygiene. Poor or unkempt personal hygiene is an immediate warning sign. It not only denies elders a sense of personal dignity but it usually signals inadequate care or even outright abuse.

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