There are many studies that look into which types of elder abuse are most common. There are varied reports and different conclusions, but each of these studies does show that it’s a valid point to be worried about nursing home and assisted-living abuse.

A national study completed by Acierno showed that financial mistreatment was one of the most commonly reported kinds of abuse. This is when someone steals money from an elder or manipulates an elder’s money for their own wishes. The elderly person may or may not be of sound mind when this happens.

In another study, it was discovered that verbal mistreatment was the most common. This could include name-calling, arguing, emotional abuse and other verbal acts. These types of abuse often do not go reported due to elders having no one to turn to or being afraid (or ashamed) to ask for help.

What defines elder abuse?

There is actually no recognized, universal definition for elder abuse. When an agency or individual reports abuse, the case has to be considered closely to determine if it is abuse, neglect or something else completely. Every state defines abuse or neglect differently as well, which makes it harder for statistics to show the reality of what is happening to elders in America.

What can you do if you suspect abuse?

No matter what the situation is, if you suspect abuse is taking place, it’s important to do what you can to protect your loved one. That might mean moving to a new assisted-living facility or calling the police, working with the facility to change employees who work with your loved one or other options.