Question: What are examples of elder abuse other than the usual physical signs?
Dr. Amy: No one deserves to be ill treated or abused. Everyone has the right to be treated with dignity and respect. While physical abuse can sometimes be the easiest to spot, elder abuse also includes emotional or psychological abuse, financial abuse, sexual abuse and neglect. Sometimes seniors will report abuse, but often they are embarrassed or ashamed about the abuse and will avoid talking about it. The American Psychological Association has published a comprehensive article on elder abuse.
See: http://www.apa.org/pi/aging/resources/guides/elder-abuse.aspx. This article outlines the signs to look for in each type of abuse. It also provides details of who you can call for help, including the Eldercare Locator, which is sponsored by the Administration on Aging. If you know the address of the older person who is being abused, the Eldercare Locator can refer you to the appropriate agency to report suspected abuse. Dial: 1-800-677-1116. Whether you are a senior or a caregiver, I think you will find this article helpful. If you suspect that someone is being abused, or if you feel you are a potential abuser, I encourage you to call for help without delay.
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