Elder abuse is any harm done to an elderly person that is violent or abusive. Common types of elder abuse are physical, psychological (mental and emotional) and financial. Elder abuse is a growing problem anywhere and it must be tackled by public awareness among the Deaf people. Seniors who are isolated and those with serious health problems, are most vulnerable and likely to be neglected. Financial abuse is the most common type of elder abuse.
Elder abuse happens because of the abuser’s power and control over an elderly person. Also it can result from the abuser's drug or alcohol problem, gambling and family violence, or mental health issues. The abuser tends to intimidate, isolate, dominate or control old person.
• Fear, anxiety
• Depression, passiveness
• Unexplained physical injuries
• Poor nutrition or poor hygiene
• Improper use of medication
• Forcing to sign papers, or change the will
• Money gets stolen, dwindling bank account
• Not willing to talk about the situation
Often, elderly people know who their abusers are…family member, friend, health caregiver, neighbor, etc… In many situations of elder abuse, the abuser is dependent on the elderly person for money, food and shelter.
Older adults may feel ashamed or embarrassed to tell anyone about the abuse. They may be afraid of retaliation or punishment. They worry about having to move out of their houses. They may be loyal to the family and its reputation. Some are not aware that there are services to help them. Often, the elderly depend on their abuser.