Elderly abuse has affected many lives in one way or another. It is an important health problem. According to the article Elder Abuse Statistics: Statistics Over Time, around 1 in 6 people 60 years and older experienced some form of abuse in the community setting during the past year. Rates of elder abuse are high in institutions such as nursing homes and long-term care facilities, with 2 in 3 staff reporting that they have committed abuse in the past year (“Elder Abuse Statistics- Statistics on Elderly Abuse over Time”). When reading the article Elder Abuse Statistics: Statistics over time, it stated that people who are seniors will double from millions to billions. Elderly abuse can happen in many different forms. There are different kinds of elderly abuse that include, physical abuse, financial exploitation and neglect abuse among elderly people. Family members can also play a role in elderly abuse.
The National Center for Biotechnology Information stated, “physical abuse against elderly, involves the application of physical violence or force against an elder that results in physical impairment, physical pain, injury or bodily harm to the individual” (Reay & Browne, 2001). Some types of physical abuse may be battery, assaulting a person, hitting or preventing an individual from moving. Elderly people may encounter physical abuse from a person they know, from a nurse if they are needing assistance, caregiver or even a family member. Sometimes elderly people do not report the physical abuse or not capable of reporting it themselves. It is important that family, caregivers and friends know the physical indicator of abuse against the elderly. Some signs that the elderly person is being abuse include; past history of hospital visits due to unexplained injuries, not receiving medical care for an injury, elder withdrawal from activities they did before and social activities, and strained relationships between the person that may be caring for them.
Neglect happens when the caregivers do not respond to elderly person who can’t care for themselves. Neglect can happen in many settings of a caregiver. Some people and families are not able to care for their family members who are elderly and depend on other resources. Many elderly people have a person who works taking care of elderly people or a family members that comes into their house to care for them, long term care facilities, assisted living centers, and in home senor care. This includes; meal prepping, hygiene care, clothing care, bedding care, giving elderly people their medications, taking them to doctors appointments, helping them in their daily basic needs and sometimes providing company for them.
Unfortunately, we also hear about cases where elderly people are neglected. This may affect many families who cannot care personally for their loved ones. According to, The ScienceDirect,” in the United States, at least 1 in 10 adults aged 60 and older living in their own homes experience abuse, neglect, or exploitation annually” (“Elderly Abuse and Neglect: Responding to a National Problem”, 2008). The risk for elderly abuse can increase if a elderly person has physical or cognitive impairment and also for elderly people who are alone and may not have family nearby. Elderly abuse can have long term effects. These effects consist of emotional or psychological distress.
There are resources out there that can prevent physical and neglect for elderly people. Seniors and families can find general services to help them. The National Institute on Aging (NIA), leads the federal government in conductions and supporting research on aging and the health and well- being of older people. The National Institute on Aging (NIA) states, that The Institute wants people to understand that it is normal for people to age. It is important for people to understand the process of aging and what aging can bring to elderly people. Problems will occur and can include; diseases and medical conditions. Its Health and Aging Initiative features resources about Alzheimer’s Disease, Caregiving, Disability, Doctor- Patient communication, End of Life, Exercises, Healthy Aging, and Longevity, Legal and Financial Planning, Memory and Cognitive Health, Men’s Health, and Women’s Health.
Caring for adults who are elderly is important as many families will need to care for someone in their lives or will reach out to outside facilities to help. Important caregiver skills keep elderly people happy and healthy. Caregiving is a demanding role and is important to ensure the best possible health and well being to elderly people. Commutation is a key role. If the commutation is there between the patient and the caregiver, then a relationship will be built, and the elderly may feel safer and comfortable with their care giver. Listening is an important communication skill and the elderly person must be heard and express their needs. Empathy allows the caregiver to try to see them self’s in their shoes. Knowing the demands and limitations of the elderly person will makes things easier on them and will also allow the caregiver to know more about their patient. Observation skills are also important when caring for an elderly person. Observation means that caregivers will be able to know if the patient needs medications and see for any reaction the patient might have. It’s also important to know if the patient needs time to them self. Its ok to give them that time. Lastly, if something seems wrong then it needs attention or needs reporting. I also believe that any person who is working as a caregiver, should be education and have knowledge in how to care for elderly people. Weather it might be special training needed or classes taken by the person who will be providing services.
Human rights of older adults are important for people to understand for health and well being of elderly people and for their families Author, Carole B. Cox, MSW, PhD states, that human rights apply to everyone; they do not diminish with age. When age is used as a proxy for competency and functional well-being, many aspects of a person’s life are threatened, including the basic rights of independence, security, and dignity. Moreover, impairment itself does not diminish the importance of these rights or of the role of policies in ensuring they are met. Thus, even those with chronic conditions that impede functioning share the same basic rights free of discrimination. Social policy is meant to address social problems and inequalities in society. The government acts in problems. There are policies that involve choices concerning benefits, allocations, and the sectors that are involved in the allocations (Gilbert & Terrell, 2012). It also includes decisions about the institutions that are responsible for addressing specific concerns and problems. There is also the National Council on Aging (NCOA) Elder Justice Act that helps elder abuse protections of the Older American ACT; it promotes financial empowerment and protections; expands elder abuse research and training for law enforcement; enhances elder justice capacity at the Department of Justice; and creates Silver Alert plans nationwide.
Elderly people will always be around. Being elderly is a circle of life that all humans will reach.
The future direction or elderly people should be bright and have many options for them and for families who cannot take care of them their self’s. More Amenities and Lifestyle Perks in Traditional Senior Housing. During my research I had read about Eco-friendly senior living. Eco- friendly could be a garden that elderly people assist in, even if it’s just being able to water the plants. This will allow for them to feel useful and will give them something to look forward to each day. Eco-friendly can also be incorporated in senior living centers for elderly. Seniors can be part of a garden project, where they can later visit on daily basics to watch their plants grow or water them. Eco-friendly can also be part of a senior living at home and making it a duty for their caregiver to make them a part of. More amenities and lifestyle perks in traditional senior housing can also benefit elderly people. Having cultural and lifestyle based. Cultural events could include important events of different cultures. Educational opportunities, so people can learn about each other’s cultures.
Health education should be offered to people who might be working with elderly and to family and friends who will have to care for elderly loved ones. This will allow individuals to gain knowledge for proper care and know their options for health care. Education classes can teach individuals how to keep elderly people active. The classes can provide information on how to keep older people active and feed healthy foods. This can also decrease the changes from older people having to go into nursing homes and can live a happy life. According to the Duze University and Vocational School of health Services, “among the topics where elderly people need help most, a lack of knowledge comes first, and the World health Organization has emphasized the importance of health education to support health care needs and the health promotion for elderly people” (Rana et. Al., 2010).
Health education for people who will be caring for elderly people would be great. It requires knowledge of health and health care and can give them resources while caring for an elderly. This will also educate caregivers to learn about diseases and learning the importance about medications for their clients but also to learn on how to manage stress. There are also Caregiver wellness programs that are offered for free. These programs provide educational information for caregivers and families that will need to care for an elderly person. During my research I found two organizations that can offer support to caregivers. One website that can help is Caregiveraction.org. It serves a wide spectrum of family caregivers from parents of children with special needs to adult children caring for parents with Alzheimer’s disease. The website includes a Family Caregiver Toolbox with instructional videos and educational resources. Offers a new program to provide family caregivers in underserved areas with online training and support in a virtual classroom. Family Caregiver Network. Provides services, education programs and resources for caregivers. Oversees the National Center on Caregiving, which advances research and best practices. Offer the Family Care Navigator, which helps caregivers locate support services by state.
In conclusion, elderly care is important. Many people don’t have family who can take care of them when they are no longer able to take care of themselves. Elderly people may have to go live in an elderly facility or have a caregiver go into their home. Unfortunate elderly physical and neglect occur. That’s why it’s important to know the sings of physical and neglect abuse and report it when its needed. Caring for adults who are elderly requires knowledge to be able to keep them healthy on their well-being. There are programs that are free that can provide support for educational purposes. Caregivers and families need to know that there are Federal resources that can support them. Future direction for the elderly is looking bright, as there are more amenities and lifestyle perks going into living senior care.
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