Elder abuse is any form of mistreatment to an older person. 

  1. Financial: Illegal or improper use of an older persons funds, property, or resources. This type of abuses costs older adults $2.9 billion annually. 
  2. Neglect: Disregard of an aging persons needs by a caregiver.
  3. Self Neglect: Disregard of one’s own essential needs.
  4. Sexual: Non-consensual sexual contact of any kind, this includes when an olden adult is in a diminished capacity and unable to give consent. 
  5. Physical: Any physical force, including assault, battery, and inappropriate restraint. 
  6. Psychological: Mental or emotional anguish by threat, humiliation, or other verbal or nonverbal conduct. 

Much abuse occurs because the abuser is overwhelmed, on drugs, or is a predator.

If you suspect a loved one is being abused, call the Illinois Elder Abuse Hotline at 1-866-800-1409 or click HERE to find the number for your state.  

Data from the National Center on Elder Abuse No Abuse

  • 1 in 10 elders experience some type of physical abuse
  • Nearly 50% of elders with dementia are abused
  • 90% of abusers are adult family members
  • Most abuse is not reported
  • 10,000 victims annually
  • Elder abuse is the least recognized type of abuse.

Signs of Elder Abuse:

  1. Having a sense that something is not right
  2. Caregivers refusal to allow you to see the elder alone
  3. Unexplained injuries: bruising, scars, broken bones, marks on wrists
  4. Misuse of medication: rreoprted overdose of fauilure to take perscribed medication
  5. Threating, belittling or controling behavior by caregiver
  6. Behavior from the elder that mimics dementia: rocking, sucking, mumbling
  7. Unusual weight loss or malnutrition
  8. Unsanitary or unsafe\ living conditions
  9. Desertion of an elder in a public place
  10. Untreated physical problems: bed sores
  11. Sudden change in elders financial conditions
  12. Missing items or cash from seniors home
  13. Suspicious changins in wills, power of attorney, titles, policies
  14. Additional names on seniors signature card
  15. Unpaid bills or lack of medical care   

How to Prevent Elder Abuse: Listen, Intervene and Educate.

    1. Listen to seniors and their caregivers
    2. Intervene when you suspect elder abuse
    3. Educate yourself and others about how to recognize elder abuse

    When in doubt, report : Illinois passed the Adult Protective Services Act allowing anyone to report elder abuse anonymously by calling: 1-866-800-1409 

    If you are using an agency, independent caregiver or assisted living community, talk to them about their policy on elder abuse and how they handle it if it occurs.  You can find an example of ours HERE.


    Questions? Leave a comment or email us at StayInPlace@GoldenHeartSeniorCare.com

    • Team Golden Heart

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