Elder Abuse has become a major issue in our country today. Statistics are showing a high rate of abuse among the elderly population, with even more cases unreported. Unfortunately, elderly people are abused in our country on a daily basis. They are abused by their friends, relatives, and caregivers, either in their homes or assisted living facilities. It is quite difficult for people to understand how elderly people are being abused without knowing the cause, effects and solutions to the issue. The purpose of this paper is to help one understand what causes elder abuse, the effects it has, and possible solutions to the issue. This way we may completely understand and prevent it from ...view middle of the document...
Elder abuse is the term that refers to any knowing, intentional, or negligent act by a caregiver or any other person that causes harm or a serious risk of harm to an elder. Fifty states have now passed some form of elder abuse prevention laws to help with this ongoing issue (Pollack, 2013). Let’s start with the different forms of elder abuse. These include physical abuse, emotional abuse, financial exploitation, sexual abuse, neglect, and self- neglect.
Physical abuse is inflicting physical pain or injury on an elder. It is also the second most common form of abuse. Some examples being: slapping, bruising, or restraining by physical or chemical means. Also, improperly restraining or drugging an elderly person is also considered a form of physical abuse. Lastly, depriving and elder of food and drink or forcing them to eat or drink is considered physical abuse as well (Eisikovits et al., 2013).
Emotional abuse occurs when assisted living staff or caregivers willfully inflict mental and psychological pain, anguish, distress or suffering towards an elder individual using verbal or nonverbal acts. Emotional abuse includes but is not limited to: verbal insults, intimidation, threatening physical violence, humiliating, harassing, insulting, isolating, giving the elder the silent treatment or treating the elder as if they were an infant or child (Eisikovits et al., 2013).
Financial exploitation is the illegal taking, misuse, or concealment of funds, property, or assets of an elder for someone else's benefit. Financial exploitation occurs when an individual who controls the finances for the elder exploits their position and irresponsibly or inappropriately uses money, funds, property, or assets that are intended for use by an elder. Examples of this type of abuse include but are not limited to; not paying bills on time, using stealing or misusing money or possessions for their own use, cashing elder’s checks without their approval, forging an elder’s signature, abusing their power of attorney for their personal gain and deceiving an elder into signing a will, contract, or document (Beidler, 2012).
Sexual abuse is any non-consensual sexual contact of any kind to the elder. Sexual elder abuse is perhaps the most worst of all acts perpetrated by assisted living staff and caregivers upon elders. Sexual abuse can also occur when sexual contact occurs with an elderly person who is unable to give their consent. This can include, but is not limited to coerced sex, coerced nudity, touching in a sexual manner, rape, sodomy, sexual assault or battery, sexual explicit photographing of the elder and lastly pornography (ncea.gov).
Neglect is the failure by those responsible to provide basic human needs. Neglect occurs when a caregiver does not provide adequate food, water, clothing, shelter, medicine, personal safety, or other essentials needs. Examples of neglect include but are not limited to: not providing an adequate diet or ignoring a special diet,...