Dehydration and Malnutrition in New York Nursing Homes
Dehydration and malnutrition are one of the most common types of nursing home abuse.
What Is Dehydration?
Dehydration is rapid loss of body fluid, and according to the American Medical Association, a weight loss in excess of three percent of the individual’s body weight qualifies as rapid weight loss.
What Can Lead to Dehydration?
- Lack of access to beverages
- Medication side effects
- Physical changes in the elderly person’s body
An individual may experience fluid weight loss as a result of the following:
What Are the Signs of Dehydration?
The most serious signs of dehydration include vomiting, trouble breathing and seizures. Anyone with symptoms like these should be given emergency treatment immediately because these symptoms can be life-threatening.
Other symptoms of dehydration include:
- Appetite loss
- Dark colored urine
- Dizziness or lightheadedness
- Dry mouth
- Flushed face
What Is Malnutrition?
When nursing home residents do not eat balanced meals or get enough food, they can become malnourished.
How Does Malnutrition Occur?
Dental problems may make it difficult for a resident to eat certain foods. Some elderly persons are unable to feed themselves. When staff shortages exist, those who cannot feed themselves may end up not eating.
In addition, when food is not properly stored or the home serves bland foods or unappetizing meals, residents may not want to eat. Spoiled, ruined or bland foods can result in malnutrition.
Depression can also be a reason that a nursing home resident is not eating well because depression often results in appetite loss. Medications can also cause for lack of appetite.
Reference: Nursing Home Abuse Center
When to Seek Legal Help
If you suspect that nursing home neglect has resulted in dehydration or malnutrition, and the situation is serious, seek legal help. An experienced attorney can investigate and evaluate whether nursing home abuse exists and help you take legal action.
At Sackstein Sackstein & Lee, LLP, we offer a free initial consultation to discuss and evaluate the circumstances involved with your injury.