Elderly abuse is referred to as the deliberate, repeated act or lack thereof by a caregiver in a relationship where there is an expectation of trust. The problem has become increasingly rampant, and it is related with higher numbers of people being admitted in hospital. In their study of elder abuse, Wang et al. (2015) affirm that up to 10% of elderly adults report undergoing some form of abuse.
Elderly abuse manifests itself in different ways. There is neglect, which infers to failing or refusing to provide an older adult with the necessary care needed for sustenance. It can be in the form of refusing to provide food, clothing, medication, or hygiene. In addition, there is physical abuse in which bodily harm is inflicted upon the elderly. Based on the assessment of Pillemer et al. (2016), physical abuse is the most common type of mistreatment.
Specific societal issues form barriers to abolishing elderly abuse, thereby making abuse against the elderly prevail without intervention. The devaluation and lack of respect for the elderly is a good factor that has been erased for proper upbringing. Furthermore, shame and embarrassment often cause elderly victims of abuse to stay silent about their travails. Liu et al. (2017) affirm that physical abuse causes mental anguish to the elderly who in turn, stay quiet about the problem. Neglect and physical abuse are the most basic forms of elderly abuse, which require urgent attention. According to Yon et al. (2018) the prevalence of elderly abuse is most prevalent in institutions with physical abuse, neglect, and psychological forms of abuse taking the forefront.
Elderly abuse arises from situations where stress becomes too much for caregivers. In this case, they should be accorded significant relief from the task through regular leaves or breaks. Furthermore, counseling should be carried out to address the stress that caregivers are exposed to. When the work becomes overwhelming, the caregivers should be listened and counseled to prevent pent up issues from being taken out on the elderly.