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What is Elder Abuse?

There are many different forms of elder abuse.  Common forms of this type of abuse include physical abuse, verbal abuse, neglect, emotional abuse, financial abuse, and sexual abuse.  Unfortunately, elderly individuals can be subjected to abuse, even in presumably safe locations such as nursing home facilities and in their own homes with family members and caregivers.

Physical Abuse

Physical abuse occurs when someone uses intentional and purposeful force against an elderly person.  Common types of physical abuse include choking, hitting, slapping, shoving, along with the unreasonable use of restraints.

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Neglect or Abandonment

Typically, neglect or abandonment occurs as a result of a caretaker failing to perform their necessary caretaking obligations.  However, these forms of abuse may also occur at the hands of a family member who has taken on some caretaking responsibilities and then chooses to neglect or abandon these responsibilities.  Whether or not certain actions will qualify as neglect or abandonment will depend on the elderly person’s needs.

Financial Abuse

There are many different types of financial abuse that elders are subject to.  One form of such abuse occurs when a caretaker or family member tries to control the elderly individual’s finances, generally for their own financial benefit.  Another form of financial abuse to watch out for is a family member convincing the elderly relative to change their will in order for that person to receive a larger inheritance.

Emotional Abuse

Another form of abuse that elderly individuals are susceptible to is emotional abuse.  Emotional abuse may involve isolation, humiliation, threats and intimidation, and verbal abuse.

Being aware of the different forms of elder abuse that may occur to your loved one is an important part of protecting them against elder abuse.  If you are concerned this is happening to someone you love, make sure to talk to them about it right away and get them the help they need.


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