Why Do Vulnerable Nursing Home Residents Suffer Malnutrition and Dehydration?
A basic element of quality care for nursing home residents is ensuring they receive proper nutrition and dehydration. While it can seem unfathomable that residents wouldn't receive this minimal level of care, the truth is many suffer from lack of food and liquids. This lack of quality care is a form of nursing home abuse and neglect and can cause residents to suffer serious physical and mental injuries.
Who Is at Most Risk for Malnutrition and Dehydration?
Some nursing home residents are at higher risk of becoming malnourished or dehydrated because they suffer from certain medical or psychological disorders. Conditions include:
- Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, and confusion
- Depression and psychological disorders, such as severe anxiety
- Adverse reactions to medications, such as nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea
- Interactions between medications and foods that prevent the absorption of nutrients
- Major mouth problems, such as ill-fitting dentures, mouth sores, and other dental pain
- Stroke-related issues
- Swallowing difficulties
- Tremors that make it difficult for residents to feed themselves
- Use of medications, such as laxatives and antidepressants
How Does Staff Care Impact Dehydration and Malnutrition in Residents?
Malnutrition and dehydration often occurs when nursing home staff members fail to properly care for at-risk residents. Here are some of the common forms of nursing home negligence:
- Failure to provide sufficient amounts of food and liquid to patients on a regular basis
- Failure to provide nutritious food
- Failure to supervise residents at meals or when providing snacks and assisting those who have difficulty eating or drinking
- Failure to train staff on nutrition, and proper care for residents who have difficulty chewing or swallowing or are at higher risk of dehydration or malnutrition
- Failure to keep records of patients’ food and liquid intake
- Failure to provide prompt medical care to residents showing signs of dehydration or malnutrition
Are you worried that a family member isn't being provided with sufficient food or drink at his nursing home? Fill out our online form to learn how Morton Law Offices can help you stop the neglect and abuse and obtain possible compensation.