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Warning signs of bad nursing homes

When you find a nursing home for your elderly parent, you hope it is a positive and healthy environment. After all, these people are professionals who are responsible for the health and well-being of their residents. Unfortunately, some nursing home facilities can be detrimental to the physical and mental health of residents. 

How do you recognize a bad nursing home? Here are some signs to watch for before and after placing your parent in one. 

Questions to ask when searching

Here are some factors to consider when you are looking for a new place for your parent to call home:

  • How clean is the nursing home? (When touring, ask to see resident rooms to determine janitorial care.)
  • Do you smell strong odors such as urine or feces?
  • Is there a strong smell of air fresheners or disinfectants that may be covering up bad odors?
  • Does the staff communicate disrespectfully with the residents?
  • Do staff members know the names of residents?
  • Are there any restraints, such as straps or vests on beds, present?
  • Do residents look unhappy or inactive?
  • Does the staff promptly answer calls for help?

If the facility you visit has any of these warning signs, it may not be a good place for your parent.

Red flags when your parent is in a nursing home

When you find a place for your parent, you may assume it is good at the beginning. However, things are not always as they seem. Here are some tips for recognizing signs of bad care, neglect and abuse:

  • Make regular visits and communicate consistently with your parent.
  • Look for poor personal hygiene. 
  • Watch out for unexplained injuries, especially bedsores and bruises. 
  • Notice if your parent withdraws from you emotionally. 
  • Keep an eye on staff activity, including high turnover or lack of sufficient members. 

It is vital to do everything you can to keep your parent safe and sound in a nursing home.

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