Placing a loved one into a nursing home is hard. It might be the last resort after trying in-home health care options or attempting to care for them yourself. The reality is that many people need to go into nursing homes, especially as they approach the end of their lives.

If you’re worried about placing a loved one in a nursing home, you’re not alone. There are so many terrible stories about abuse and neglect that it’s hard to imagine putting someone in one of these facilities. Fortunately, for every horror story, there are many stories of people who have great experiences. You just have to be aware of the risks and do what you can to mitigate them.

How can you prevent nursing home abuse?

One of the best ways to prevent abuse is by being present. Often, it’s elders who are left alone or without visitors who end up facing abuse. If you make yourself known and get to know the staff, you’re less likely to have problems.

If a problem does occur, you’ll have connections to help you resolve it. Additionally, you’ll be more familiar with the relationship between your loved one and the staff members.

Another thing to do is to speak up when you see problems. If your loved one mentions waiting too long to get to the bathroom because the nurses were too busy, it’s worth bringing this to the attention of the nursing home director. Hiring more staff members or giving some current members more hours could help eliminate the problem and help your loved one get better care.