June is Elder Abuse Awareness Month. I have included some statistics below so you can better understand what elder abuse is and the different types of elder abuse.
· Elder Abuse is an intentional or negligent action that causes harm or creates a serious risk of harm to an older adult.
· Accurate estimates of the prevalence of this problem are difficult to obtain, as many older people do not report being abused.
· The most common form of elder abuse is neglect, followed by physical abuse and financial exploitation.
· Other forms of elder abuse include emotional abuse, sexual abuse and abandonment.
· Most elder abuse victims are female and adult children are the most frequent abusers of older persons.
· Risk factors for elder abuse include social isolation, dementia in the victim, mental illness of the abuser, alcohol or drug abuse, and mutual dependence between the abuser and the victim.
Different types of Elder Abuse
- Physical Abuse—Inflicting, or threatening to inflict, physical pain or injury on a vulnerable elder, or depriving them of a basic need.
- Emotional Abuse—Inflicting mental pain, anguish, or distress on an elder person through verbal or nonverbal acts.
- Sexual Abuse—Non-consensual sexual contact of any kind, coercing an elder to witness sexual behaviors.
- Exploitation—Illegal taking, misuse, or concealment of funds, property, or assets of a vulnerable elder.
- Neglect—Refusal or failure by those responsible to provide food, shelter, health care or protection for a vulnerable elder.
- Abandonment—The desertion of a vulnerable elder by anyone who has assumed the responsibility for care or custody of that person.