Monday, December 19, 2011

Nursing Homes and Loneliness

Many of our country’s elderly citizens now reside in nursing homes or residential care facilities.  Although nursing homes can be a good environment for some residents, others often experience feelings of loneliness, isolation, and depression after being admitted to the facility.  Too often, these feels last and become chronic feelings that negatively impact the quality of life of the elderly person.

Some researchers say that up to 84% of the elderly population suffers from loneliness, and 20-25% of nursing home residents are also depressed.  Unfortunately, depression and isolation often go untreated in nursing home facilities because it is difficult to accurately assess.  

According to the experts, nursing home residents also have few opportunities for formal and informal social activities.  As a result of this, many of the residents experience feelings of prolonged isolation and loneliness.  One research study mentioned the fact that, in some nursing homes, there was formal staff engagement in social activities only 10% of the time.  The rest of the time, residents had to create their own social engagements or organize their own activities.
Unfortunately, your loved one’s isolation and loneliness could also be a result of abuse at the hands of the nursing home staff.  Although these symptoms are not always are a direct result of abuse, if you suspect that an elderly loved one has been abused while in the care of another, it could be time to take legal action.  Contact an experienced elder abuse lawyer, Attorney Doug Stoehr, for more information about your possible legal claim.
If you would like more information about this page or Attorney Stoehr's areas of practice, contact our Altoona, Pennsylvania, law firm by calling 814-946-4100. Home and hospital visits can be arranged. Evening and weekend hours are available for your convenience.

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