Understanding the Importance of Elder Care Advocacy: 5 Key Points

LawUnderstanding the Importance of Elder Care Advocacy: 5 Key Points

When you have an elderly loved one under the care of others, be it a family member, nursing home facility, or an assisted living center, then it’s wise to know when and how your loved one needs to be advocated for.

The elderly community is often at the mercy of their caregivers and the establishments they live in for many reasons, including physical, financial, and mental limitations.

For this reason, advocating for your loved one who can no longer care for themselves is vital to their well-being and continued emotional, physical, and mental health.

Elder care advocacy is something you should never underestimate, and here are 5 key points that support exactly why elder care advocacy is important.

1. Your Loved One May Be Abused

Elder abuse is an unfortunate reality in all kinds of settings. Your loved one may be handled roughly by caregivers or, more likely, be given lackluster care while they are in the care of family members or professionals in a nursing home setting.

This can lead to bed sores, weight loss (or weight gain due to emotional or stress eating), changes in behavior, or other concerns that put your elderly loved one at risk of physical and emotional stress.

Without someone advocating on their behalf, your loved one may continue to face regular abuse and be too afraid or too unaware to report it for themselves.

If you believe your loved one may be abused while in the care of others, document the concerns you have and speak to a legal specialist for assistance.

2. Your Loved One May Be Neglected

You may not see signs of abuse in your loved one, but this doesn’t mean they aren’t being abused in other ways.

Neglect can easily happen with the elderly because they are unable to speak up for themselves, either because they are unaware of what is going on due to dementia or other age-related illnesses or because they cannot speak up for themselves.

This may be caused by fear of repercussion, being gaslit into not understanding their rights, or physical limitations. Elderly abuse by neglect is often caused by nursing homes being overwhelmed and understaffed or by inexperienced aides or family members caring for individuals incorrectly.

Neglect can lead to malnourishment and other health issues, including missing medications, bed sores, and even more serious harm, like death.

For this reason, elder care advocacy is important, and hiring a nursing home neglect lawyer is key to ensuring your loved one gets the representation they deserve to live comfortably and stay safe.

3. Your Loved One May Be Stolen From

Financial abuse is another concern regarding elder care. Often, the elderly leave their loved ones in charge of their finances when they enter nursing or assisted living centers, and these funds can be abused in ways that don’t benefit them.

An elderly person who doesn’t handle their own finances may leave their funds and have no idea they are being stolen from or having their funds mismanaged. Elder care advocacy is essential in this arena as well, so your loved one’s money can stay where it belongs — to the benefit of your elderly family member.

4. Your Loved One May Be Receiving Incorrect Care

If your loved one is at home and receiving at-home care or if they are in a nursing home and receiving care under a medical professional, they should be receiving the medication, physical therapy, and other services customized to their needs.

This may not be happening, however, and your elderly loved one may not realize they could be receiving better or different care.

Hiring an advocate or being an advocate on their behalf can help improve your loved one’s quality of life and give them the mental, emotional, and physical care they deserve.

5. Your Loved One May Wish for Different Care

Perhaps your elderly loved one can voice their concern about their care, or they want to hire a different caregiver, live somewhere else, or move back into their original home.

If your elderly family member has assigned another family member Power of Attorney, it can be difficult for your loved one to have their wishes carried out without legal intervention.

Hiring a lawyer to advocate for the best interests of your loved one can be a great way to ensure their continued or changing wishes are carried out as necessary.

Signs Your Loved One Needs Elder Care Advocacy

There are several signs your loved one needs more care and a voice to speak out on their behalf. Explore the following signs to see if they apply to your elderly loved one.

The Need for More Care

Does your loved one live alone but need more help with chores, paying bills, or getting to doctor’s appointments? Are other family members preventing your loved one from receiving care or getting more care?

Any Abuse

Is your loved one’s bank account dwindling without a reason? Does your elderly loved one look thinner or have poorer hygiene than usual, or are they complaining of bed sores or acting strangely, almost fearful, around you or others?

Change in Physical Or Mental Health

Has your loved one experienced a change in their physical or mental health, leaving them unable to make decisions on their own? Do they need an elder abuse attorney to assist them?

Assisting Your Loved One

If you notice any red flags regarding the health and well-being of your elderly loved one, call for elderly advocacy care right away. The sooner your loved one receives assistance, the better quality of life they will have.

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