According to the
Alzheimer’s Association, dementia is “an overall term that describes a wide range of symptoms
associated with a decline in memory or other thinking skills severe enough
to reduce a person’s ability to perform everyday activities.”
What are the most common types of dementia? “Alzheimer’s disease accounts for 60 to 80 percent of cases.
Vascular dementia, which occurs after a stroke, is the second most common dementia type,”
says the Alzheimer’s Association. Unfortunately, research indicates
that adults with dementia are at a higher risk of
elder abuse than seniors who don’t have it, the
National Center on Elder Abuse (NCEA) reports.
Data released from the NCEA reveals that about 5.1 million Americans 65
and older are suffering with some form of dementia, and nearly half of
all seniors over the age of 85 have Alzheimer’s disease. “People
with dementia are particularly vulnerable to abuse because of impairments
in memory, communication abilities, and judgement,” says the NCEA.
Even though elder abuse against people with dementia is widespread, experts
believe the prevalence is underestimated because the victims don’t
report the abuse because:
- They’re afraid,
- They’re embarrassed,
- They’re afraid of retaliation,
- They don’t think anyone will believe them, or
- Their cognitive impairments make them unable to report it.
The NCEA says that elder abuse against individuals with dementia is a “hidden
offense, perpetrated against vulnerable people with memory impairment,
by those on whom they depend.”
If your loved one has dementia and you’re concerned that they’re
being mistreated, it’s time to look for the signs of abuse or neglect.
Common signs of abuse or
neglect include: unexplained bruising, sudden weight loss, a change in your loved
one’s demeanor, complaints of abuse from your loved one,
bedsores, restraint marks, foul odors, and much more.
Notice any of the above signs of elder abuse? If so, contact Norman Taylor & Associatesat once for experienced and compassionate legal advocacy!