Elderly Abuse


Elderly Abuse is a hot topic in today’s eldercare sector, since the incidence of senior citizen neglect and abuse is an epidemic concern all across the world.  The elderly are an age demographic which is particularly susceptible to various abusive behaviors, including physical abuse, emotional abuse, financial abuse, sexual abuse and medical abuse.  Worse still, many seniors can not get help when they are being mistreated, dooming them to protracted periods of suffering, often ending in significant injury or even death.


The elderly deserve respect after a lifetime of struggle and hard work.  Elders have earned the right to enjoy mental peace and quality healthcare in their old age.  The ravages of time, disease and advancing years are hard enough to bear, but when neglect or abuse is added to the mix, there is little hope for truly enjoying one’s golden years.  Senior citizens must face a variety of problematic concerns as they age, including the mental and physical health issues which might make them incredibly dependent upon caregivers.  It is this very dependency which prevents many seniors from getting help when they are suffering abuse.


In some cases, the elder can call for help, but is hesitant.  They are being abused by the very person(s) who are taking care of them and are afraid of what will happen if their caregiver is arrested.  Most of the time, this takes place when the elder still lives at home and is cared for in a domestic situation by family or friends.  A great number of these elders are terrified of being all alone or being placed in a nursing home, so they endure neglect or abuse in favor of an unknown fate.  In other cases, the elder can not get help for themselves, despite their most sincere desire to do so.  This often happens when the health issues dominating the elder are so severe that the senior is literally imprisoned in their own body.  In other cases, the elder is purposefully isolated away from the world, by their abuser, so they can not get help.  Either way, the senior must endure the continuing poor treatment until a virtual miracle occurs or they, or their abuser, eventually expires…


Elderly abuse comes in many faces and can occur due to a great number of reasons.  Most often, abuse and neglect occur when the elder is cared for in their own home, or in the home of a family member.  The reason for the abuses can vary greatly, with passive reasons including poverty, ignorance or health issues with the caregiver and active reasons including caregiver substance abuse, depravity or other criminal intent.  Elderly self neglect is a huge problem for seniors who live alone or with other equally helpless older people.  Self neglect is one of the most common forms of senior citizen abuse with contributing factors including dementia, like Alzheimer’s disease, physical health concerns and poverty.  Occasionally, elders are abused by professional care workers who visit them at home. Home health aides and personal care assistants have been implicated in a large number of abuse cases.  Abuse and neglect which occurs in nursing homes, assisted living facilities and other long term eldercare centers is the rarest form of the problem.  However, while nursing home abuse only rarely happens; it always makes the news headlines, due to the shocking nature of the case.  Of course, these statistics are based on eldercare in the US and other well developed countries. When it comes to lesser developed and undeveloped nations, all bets are off, and elders are truly likely to suffer abuse, regardless of where they may receive care…


Elderly abuse is a topic which has fascinated and enraged me for many years.  I have made it a goal to help educate people about senior citizen abuse and neglect in order to help them recognize the signs of abuse, prevent neglect and stamp out the incidence of this horrific problem worldwide.


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