The neglect of the elderly has become an ongoing epidemic. Older people are living longer and are in better health than years ago. Even though most elderly people are living at home, this is where most of the abuse takes place. Elderly abuse does not necessarily mean physical abuse; in most case it can be mental or emotional. Studies estimate that 4 million older Americans are victims of physical and psychological abuse and neglect. The fact is elderly abuse can happen anywhere and it is expected to increase.
There are several indicators that reflect neglect of elderly. When an elder will not speak for himself or herself without the caregiver being present, this could be a sign.
If an elder suddenly seems malnourished and losing weight, these could as well be signs. Other indicators that could signal abuse are cuts, lacerations, punctures, wounds bruises, welts, discolorations, grip marks, poor skin condition, and dehydration and/or malnourishment without illness-related cause. Elderly also experience emotional and financial exploitation abuse.
While there are many factors and signs that contribute to this, these are sometimes harder to identify. Some of the signs of emotional abuse are being emotionally upset or agitated, being extremely withdrawn, and non-communicative or non-responsive.