7 Signs Your Loved One is Not Being Monitored in an Iowa Nursing Home

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Posted by Pressley Henningsen

There are 7 potential signs that your loved one is not being properly watched in their Iowa nursing home care facility:

(1) Unanswered or avoided questions by nursing home staff

It’s natural to have questions regarding your loved one’s care plan, their medications, or other issues that involve how the nursing home is caring for them. If the staff can’t or won’t answer those questions, you should be concerned.

Make sure you attend as many care plan conferences as possible. If you can’t attend in person, ask to appear by telephone. This is something any reasonable nursing home or care facility can accommodate.

If they can’t answer your basic questions, put your concerns in writing and share them with the administrator of the nursing home.

(2) Understaffing

I encourage people to visit the Iowa nursing home where their loved one is located, unannounced, at all times and days of the week. If when you arrive, you have a difficult time locating nursing home staff, this can be a warning sign. Staff should always be available to answer any questions you have and be providing regularly scheduled care for your loved one. If they are not, then you may suspect staff is not providing your loved one with enough care.

If you find this is the case, speak with the director of nursing or the administrator of the facility about your concerns. 

(3) Unexplained injuries or accidents

If you’re finding unexplained bruises, cuts, or other sores on your loved one and these injuries can’t be explained to you, this should raise a red flag. Likewise, if your loved one has had some kind of incident (like elopement) that could have resulted in injury, this could be considered another sign of nursing home neglect.

(4) Large weight loss or dehydration

Has your loved one lost five percent or more of their body weight in a month, and health conditions have been ruled out, then you should be concerned. Dietary and nutrition are important for the elderly to stay healthy, and most nursing home residents have food plans to follow. If these plans are not being followed, it could result in weight loss and other nutritional issues.

Dehydration can easily occur if your loved one doesn’t have water made available to them in the way they can consume it. For instance, it does no good to have water on a nightstand if your loved one doesn’t have the strength to pour the water for themselves.

(5) Your loved one has bed sores

Bed sores can happen to an otherwise healthy individual, but usually, they do not. Usually, bed sores happen because someone isn’t being turned or repositioned every two hours as recommended. Bedsores occur in people often who are:

  • Lacking in nutrition
  • Dehydrated
  • Not on the proper bed
  • Using an improper assisting device that causes a sore.

If your loved one is developing any kind of significant bed sore, it needs to be taken very seriously. They should seek immediate medical attention for their sore.

The nursing home should inform you every time a bed sore occurs and what they are doing to mitigate the risks of bed sores. If they do not, it’s a good idea to speak with an experienced Iowa nursing home abuse attorney to figure out what your next steps should be.

(6) Poor hygiene

Your loved one deserves to be treated with dignity and respect, and this includes cleanliness. If you are finding them regularly in soiled adult diapers or isn’t being cared for with respect to hair and teeth brushing or being washed and shaved, then you should be concerned. This could mean the staff is not providing even more essential care that your loved one needs.

Be sure to report these concerns to management and make sure they’re properly addressed.

(7) Unexplained new grogginess

Grogginess can be a sign of overmedication, depression, or some other worsening condition. If this is not quickly addressed, it can lead to long-term issues. If your loved one is showing a consistent decline in how they’re interacting with you and the rest of the world, something may be wrong.

Any one of these 7 signs could potentially result in serious harm to your loved one. If someone you love is being neglected in a nursing home, we may be able to help. Call RSH Legal for a free no-obligation case evaluation today.

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