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Is your loved one overly medicated or chemically restrained?

Two dangers that your senior relative faces as a nursing home resident in Florida are overmedication and chemical restraints. With allegations of improper medication administration and use of chemical restraints on the rise, it is important for you to know how a senior care facility is treating your loved one. Your relative may suffer from dementia, bipolar disorder, or some other mental or physical ailment that may make them more aggressive at times than normal. They may also suffer from anxiety. Regardless of their medical and mental conditions, you should keep a watchful eye on the type and frequency of medication your loved one’s caregivers give them. 

Your relative may suffer from dementia, bipolar disorder, or some other mental or physical ailment that may make them more aggressive at times than normal. They may also suffer from anxiety. Regardless of their medical and mental conditions, you should keep a watchful eye on the type and frequency of medication your loved one’s caregivers give them. 

Factors that lead to overmedication 

Some nursing homes administer antipsychotic medications to their residents to sedate them and keep them calm. They may also give these medications to the elderly because they do not have the right staff to patient ratios. Nursing home staff are legally allowed to use psychoactive and antipsychotic medications on residents if they have a legitimate, documented medical need for them. However, in cases of abuse, many caregivers use these substances to control their patients.

Signs of overmedication 

Residents who receive the wrong medications are at risk for adverse health complications and death. No matter the reasons, you should learn how to recognize if your loved one is overly medicated or taking chemical restraints. Common signs that indicate there are issues with medication administration include: 

  •        Persistent tiredness and fatigue
  •        Significant changes in behavior
  •        Sudden injuries
  •        Changes in personality
  •        Confusion
  •        Health complications 

The above symptoms are some of the different ways your loved could react to overmedication and chemical restraints. You should visit your relative often to observe him or her for signs of neglect and abuse. You should also keep track of all medications your loved one is receiving, both prescribed and over the counter. 

If you suspect your relative is suffering from overmedication, abuse or some other type of neglect while residing at a nursing home, you should document and report your suspicions to the proper authorities. You may also want to discuss the situation with an attorney to learn your options.

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