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Why Is Sedation for Care Considered Nursing Home Abuse?

The final phases of our lives are often the most peaceful ones. Many people retire by this point, giving them plenty of opportunity to relax and enjoy their hobbies.

Some people need extra help as they age, which is why over 1.4 million people live in nursing homes in the United States. Ideally, these locations would be great ways to spend our final years.

However, medical abuse and medical malpractice aren’t uncommon. One of the most prominent forms is sedative misuse.

Not everyone understands why this is considered nursing home abuse. Let’s explore the key information you should know about sedation for care and why it can cause problems.

Why Is It Abusive?

Sedition for care is considered abusive because it can substantially impact the patient’s mental health. It’s not uncommon to see overmedicated patients walking around like zombies or sitting lifelessly. Overmedication can also lead to several physical issues.

For instance, someone who is constantly sedated likely won’t get enough regular exercise. This can lead to the development of heart or blood pressure issues.

It can also lead to muscle atrophy. This condition makes slips and falls more likely. Put simply, sedation for care sacrifices the patient’s quality of life to make it easier for staff to manage them.

Signs of Elder Abuse

There are numerous signs of elder abuse to stay aware of. One of the most prominent is the presence of bed sores. This indicates that the patient spends most of their time lying down in bed.

Bed sores occur when the blood supply to a certain area of skin is cut off for more than a few hours. The sore can eventually break open and become infected if not properly treated.

Another common sign of abuse is when a patient isn’t eating or isn’t being fed. Abusive nursing home staff will sometimes sedate a patient and then forget to feed them.

Or, they’ll serve them food without considering that the patient is physically incapable of eating while sedated. Unsanitary living conditions are other details to consider.

It should come as no surprise that you should also look for changes in medication. If the facility seems to have randomly increased your loved one’s dosage, investigate this situation.

When to Take Action

If you notice any of the above, you’ll need to take action immediately. The longer abuse goes on, the greater the chance major issues can arise.

It’s not uncommon for prolonged elder abuse to lead to death, as well. The longer you wait, the more difficult it will be to get your loved one’s life back on track.

Finding an Attorney

There are certain criteria to consider before making your decision. This will help ensure you get the best legal representation for your case. Listed below are some of the most notable attributes to keep in mind.


Do they specialize in this area of law? Just because they say they can help doesn’t mean they have the required knowledge to do so.

They should have handled many cases like yours in the past. This will help ensure they understand your situation’s nuances. If they don’t, they’ll be much less likely to reach your goals.


Inexperienced attorneys won’t always fall short of your expectations. However, there’s a good chance they won’t satisfy them.

In general, it’s best to work with a lawyer who has at least a decade of experience in the industry. If your attorney plans on delegating your case, ask to meet with the lawyer they’ll give your case to.

Otherwise, you could end up hiring an attorney you’ve never met who is less experienced than you anticipated. It shouldn’t take long to find someone experienced, though, as reputable attorneys will always advertise this attribute.


Do they seem enthusiastic about working with you? The more interested they are in your case, the more dedicated they’ll be to achieving the desired outcome. Someone who isn’t enthusiastic will typically provide lackluster results.

You can assess their enthusiasm by paying attention to how many questions they ask about your situation. Enthusiastic lawyers will always want to learn more about the scenario. If they don’t seek information on their own, this is a red flag you can’t ignore.


What is their pricing structure like? Some attorneys charge by the hour, while others charge a flat fee. In some situations, a lawyer will work on a contingency basis.

This refers to a situation where you pay nothing upfront. Instead, they’ll take their compensation from the amount of money you’re awarded.

If they don’t win your case, you don’t have to pay anything. As you might guess, this is the most favorable option in many situations.

Find an attorney who’s willing to consider working on contingency so you can save as much money as possible. Keep in mind the percentage of compensation they take for themselves will vary. It might not be worth it if the money they take leaves you unable to pay for medical expenses.


Only work with highly communicative attorneys. They should be easy to get in touch with and highly responsive.

However, consider that extra responsiveness sometimes comes at a cost. To clarify, an attorney might respond to emails or text messages outside normal business hours. They might also charge you extra to do so.

The last thing you want is to find you’ve racked up hundreds of dollars in additional fees. With enough due diligence, you’ll find an accessible attorney who quickly provides the information you need.

Don’t Overlook Sedation for Care

If you suspect that your loved one has been a victim of sedation for care, it’s imperative to reach out to a lawyer as soon as possible. This will help them get the justice they deserve and put a stop to this behavior.

At David Bell Law Firm, we strive to exceed all expectations and deliver the best possible results. We also aim to resolve issues quickly without sacrificing quality. You’ll learn more about how we can handle your case when you book a consultation today.

Contact Us

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