As Seniors grow older, they will become more physically & mentally frail. Because of this, they’re less able to stand up to bullying and/or fight back if attacked by other people. Many people with ill intentions know this, and thus, have carried out abuse or elaborate fraud schemes targeting Seniors.

Abuse of elders or Seniors takes many different forms with some involving neglect, some involves financial deception, and other involving intimidation or threats against the Senior. Here are 6 most common types of elder abuse:

Physical Abuse

Any non-accidental use of force against an elderly person that results in physical pain, injury, or impairment is classified as physical abuse against Seniors. This kind of abuse includes not only physical assaults such as hitting or shoving the Senior, but also the inappropriate use of drugs, restraints, or confinement against the Senior’s will done by another person.

Emotional or Psychological Abuse

This kind of abuse happens when people speak to or treat elderly people in ways that results in emotional pain or distress for the Senior.

Verbal forms of emotional elder abuse can take the form of:

  • Intimidation through yelling or threats
  • Humiliation & ridicule
  • Habitual blaming or scapegoating

Nonverbal psychological elder abuse include:

  • Ignoring the Senior
  • Isolating the Senior from friends or activities
  • Terrorising or menacing the Senior

Sexual Abuse

Any sexual contact with a Senior without the Senior’s consent is categorised under sexual elder abuse. This can involve physical sex acts, but activities such as showing a Senior pornographic material, forcing him or her to watch sex acts, or forcing them to undress without their consent are also considered sexual elder abuse.

Neglect or Abandonment by Caregivers

This particular type of elder abuse constitutes more than half of all reported cases of elder abuse. It can be intentional or unintentional, based on factors such as ignorance or denial that a Senior needs as much care as he or she does.

Financial Exploitation

This involves unauthorized use of a Senior’s funds or property, either by a caregiver or an outside scam artist.

An unscrupulous caregiver might:

  • Misuse a Senior’s personal checks, credit cards, or accounts
  • Steal cash, income checks, or household goods
  • Forge the Senior’s signature
  • Engage in identity theft

Typical financial scams or fraud that target elders include:

  • Announcements of a “prize” that the elderly person has won but must pay money to claim
  • Fake charities
  • Investment fraud

Healthcare Fraud & Abuse

This is often carried out by unethical doctors, nurses, hospital personnel, and other professional care providers. Some examples of this kind of abuse include:

  • Not providing healthcare, but charging for it
  • Overcharging or double-billing for medical care or services
  • Getting kickbacks for referrals to other providers or for prescribing certain drugs
  • Overmedicating or under medicating
  • Recommending fraudulent remedies for illnesses or other medical conditions
  • Medicaid fraud

Don’t hesitate to contact contact your local police or http://www.dvrcv.org.au/elder-abuse-hotline if you think someone has conducted elder abuse to your Seniors or might be trying to do so.

If you want to know more on how we support seniors, so that they can stay safely in the comfort of their own homes for longer, contact us at your local Home Instead Senior Care office.