People who are in nursing facilities expect that the staff members will take care of them. While there are many wonderful long-term care facilities and skilled nursing facilities, there are still incidents of elder neglect and abuse that happen daily.
One issue that some residents in these facilities face is malnutrition. This is a serious problem because it can lead to serious medical challenges. In severe cases, malnutrition can lead to difficulty breathing. Decreased muscle mass, immune system weakness, overall weakness and decreased cognitive function are also possible.
What are the signs of malnutrition?
While most people are focused on weight loss as a symptom of malnutrition, there are other signs that you need to watch for. These include:
- Hair loss or severe thinning
- No interest in meals or eating
- Mood swings such as irritability and anger
- Fatigue or lethargy
- Feeling cold, having thin skin
- Longer recovery time from injuries, illnesses, or surgeries
Nursing facilities should monitor how residents are eating. Some residents, such as those who are in memory care programs, may need reminders to eat. It’s also possible that they’ll need help with eating and drinking. This type of help is considered standard assistance and should be provided without making the resident feel bad about needing help.
If your loved one suffered due to the negligence of nursing home staff you may have the right to obtain compensation for their injuries and losses. Holding a nursing home accountable for its actions is the best way to stop these acts of negligence and abuse from continuing.