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How to Choose a Caregiver for Your Loved One



Are you looking for a caregiver for your loved one? Whether you’re searching for a caregiver for a friend or family member, the person you choose matters. Not all caregivers will be a good match and it’s important to be selective. Sometimes you won’t have a choice, and in that case, you’ll need to get help wherever you can.

If you’re looking for a good caregiver to take care of your loved one, here are some tips to make the process go well.

  1. Consider being a paid caregiver for your loved one

Have you thought about becoming a caregiver for your loved one? If you’re looking for the right person, that person could be you. You might already be caring for your loved one a little, and if so, you need to know that you can get paid for your time.

For example, if you live in Nevada and your person qualifies, you can become a paid caregiver through FreedomCare. Most states offer this type of arrangement for qualified Medicaid recipients.

If the only thing holding you back from caregiving is the lack of pay, this could be an excellent solution for you and your loved one. They will feel better being cared for by someone familiar, and you’ll be able to pay your bills when you get paid for your time spent caregiving.

  1. Match your loved one up with the right person

Caregiving duties aren’t hard to learn, but being able to perform those duties isn’t the only quality to look for in a caregiver. Since caregiving is quite personal at times, it’s important that your loved one feels emotionally connected to the person providing their care.

Try to find someone your loved one can relate to on a personal level, whether it’s through a shared culture, language, preference for cuisine, music, or hobbies and interests. Part of being a caregiver includes spending quality time with someone and when your loved one can relate to their caregiver, they’ll be much happier overall.

  1. Get help to find the right caregiver

It helps to go through an agency to get the right caregiver(s) for your loved one. There are different levels of care and some require a medical license. For example, anyone can help your loved one take their prescription pills, but only a Registered Nurse (RN) can set up and administer medication through an IV or change wound dressings. While there is an exception for family members, that exception does not extend to non-family caregivers that you hire.

Before interviewing caregivers, make a list of all your requirements to make sure you interview the right people. If you aren’t sure what you need, working with an agency will ensure you get qualified caregivers.

  1. Pay attention to punctuality

When a potential caregiver shows up to their interview late, that’s a bad sign. Most caregivers are busy, but if they have a habit of showing up late, you may not be able to count on them to relieve you (or others) on time. If someone needs to leave to get to work, this can become a huge problem.

Everyone is late once in a while because things happen beyond their control. However, some caregivers are habitually late and that is not acceptable. Take note when a caregiver is late to their interview, and if hired, take note of when they arrive for their shifts. If tardiness is a pattern, find a replacement.

  1. Look for self-directed caregivers

Self-directed caregivers are people who take initiative to do what needs to be done. They still need to be oriented and trained to support your loved one according to their specific needs, but they won’t hesitate once they know what needs to happen.

If you notice a caregiver needs hands-on direction for simple things like making coffee or doing laundry, they’re probably not a good fit. In this situation, you could end up either having to babysit them or do the work that didn’t get done on their shift.

Be willing to make changes

If you find that one caregiver isn’t working out, be willing to make some changes. However, if your family member is someone who complains about everyone, you have to take things with a grain of salt. Always go with your instinct and if someone doesn’t feel right, don’t hire them.

On the other hand, if you feel enthusiastic about someone, try them out. You can always change caregivers if someone doesn’t work.