Today, elder abuse has become a common phenomenon. It can either be physical, psychological, sexual, or financial exploitation or can occur in the form of neglect, harassment, and abandonment. The World Health Organization report shows that one in six aged 60 years and above experience abuse in their background setting.
As a result, compared to other older adults, elder abuse victims are more likely to die prematurely. Therefore, it is essential to understand different forms of elder abuse and the most common include:
Physical abuse is the deliberate application of physical force against older adults, resulting in bodily injuries, impairment, or pain. Physical abuse consists of kicking, hitting, shaking, burning, and other inhumane acts. However, other manifestations of physical abuse, including force-feeding or starvation, forceful administration of drugs, etc., are usually overlooked.
Emotional abuse refers to treating an older adult in ways that result in emotional distress. The most common acts that cause this anguish include yelling, insults, intimidation, persistent ignoring, and controlling behavior.
Sexual abuse refers to any nonconsensual sexual behavior towards the elderly. The most common actions include rape, inappropriate touching, coerced nudity, and exposure to pornographic materials.
Financial abuse form of abuse happens when an abuser misuses an older person’s money or property. It includes using the older adult’s money without their consent, forging signs, misuse of the power of attorney, medical insurance fraud.
Neglect takes place when a caregiver stops to fulfill his or her caretaking obligation. Negligence can be the refusal to give the elderly necessities such as water, food, shelter, medication, and hygiene. It can also be financial if the caregiver refuses to pay for the needed care.
Abandonment is an extreme form of neglect where the caregiver completely deserts the elderly. In many instances, family members abandon older people in their homes, hospitals, or nursing homes.
Elder abuse negatively affects the elderly. It can lead to severe injuries, long-term psychological impacts, premature deaths, destruction of social and family ties, and financial losses, among others.
People require some care when they hit the age of 65. The elderly manage to take care of their needs by themselves or relying on some family members for assistance. Still, as they age, their circumstances change, forcing them to lose their mobility and the ability to perform certain activities.
However, home care is increasingly growing in popularity, and professional caregivers can help the seniors live in their homes comfortably.
Home care services include:
Household maintenance is an overwhelming task. However, home care helps the elderly execute house chores, including laundry, meal preparation, gardening, dishes, shopping, and handyman services.
A person’s mobility reduces with age. However, home care helps the seniors modify their homes to enhance comfort and increase the accessibility of essential commodities. These adjustments can include altering shower grab bars and ramps to reduce or avoid stair use, among others.
While many seniors find it hard to drive, especially at night, home care providers facilitate transportation for errands and medical appointments, which increases the seniors’ freedom to move around and maintain social networks.
Personal care and companionship
Professional home caregivers help elderly persons with daily living activities, including bathing, dressing, toileting, feeding, mobility, and going in and out of bed. They also provide limited assistance with minor health services such as checking blood pressure and administering medications. Home care also assists the seniors in engaging in hobbies and leisure activities.
Home caregivers become close friends and a part of the older adult’s family. Thus, finding the right care provider is essential.