According to a recent study at Arizona State University, 20% of residents in nursing homes are being bullied by other residents. Not only do these seniors have to deal with the everyday struggles of aging, but they have to worry and live in a state of fear or depression from being bullied by peers.

There are many ways that senior bullying manifests and that’s through physical abuse, emotional and verbal abuse, as well as social excluding. This can happen whenever seniors are asked to share small spaces or to include others in activities such as bingo, meal time, workouts or dancing. Examples from the recent study showed that seniors who were bullying a victim used yelling, name calling, or hitting and pushing. Most victims are too afraid to stand up or even say anything because they are worried about their safety. Often the affects of bullying can lead to depression or loneliness. Some seniors have even said that they are fearful for their safety.

One of the most important things you or your family members can do is to research fully into the nursing home, retirement home, or type of care that you or your family member will be given. It’s important for everyone to feel secure and safe and happy with what can be an overwhelming decision to begin with.