Dementia, Abuse Rise with Aging Population

Aggressive behavior by nursing home residents is on the rise, and is becoming a big problem in nursing homes and residential care facilities around the country.

Resident-on-resident aggression is substantially more common than previously thought,” said Dr. Karl Pillemer, a Cornell University gerontologist. “While they are mentally impaired, they are not physically impaired. They can do considerable damage.”

It is estimated that roughly half of Americans over the age of 85 suffer from Alzheimer’s disease or some other form of dementia. With the population of elderly set to explode in the next 20 years – those 65 or older will make up 20 percent of the U.S. population – most experts agree that the problem is only going to get worse.

A recent incident of peer-on-peer abuse that received substantial attention occurred in an assisted-living facility outside Minneapolis last January. Former wrestling champion Verne Gagne physically assaulted a 97-year-old fellow resident at the facility where they lived. The victim, a former concert violinist who had escaped Nazi Germany, later died.

Studies have show that men suffering from age-related mental disease are more likely to be aggressive than women.

Source: Baltimore Sun

The nursing home elder abuse and neglect lawyers at Walton Law Firm LLP represent seniors and dependent adults who have been victims of abuse or neglect in the nursing home and assisted living setting. Call (866) 607-1325 for a free and confidential consultation.