The signs are all there. Fresh groceries bought last week are sitting uneaten in the fridge. Your loved one is eating snacks or cereal rather than making meals. They’re acting more confused when you call. Their clothes aren’t clean, and household tasks are becoming harder to handle. What do you do now?

With your family and work demands, it’s impossible that you can be there for your loved one every moment. It’s clear that if they want to keep living in their own home or remain in yours, they’ll need some help to do it. It’s time to find a professional caregiver.

A professional caregiver can assist you in so many ways: providing nourishing meals, helping with personal care and hygiene, and assisting with household chores. Trained caregivers can even find fun ways to connect with your loved one, like taking them on outings, playing games, or doing other things they enjoy.

Now that you’ve decided to bring in a caregiver, your primary goal is to find the best caregiver for your loved one. The screening process gives you and your aging parent a chance to get a feel for the person who will be providing the necessary services.

Here are five things to look for when hiring a professional caregiver to assist you with this important task.

1. Experience

When interviewing prospective caregivers, ask for specifics about their previous caregiving experience. See what type of clients they’ve cared for throughout their career.

If your loved one has health issues like dementia or diabetes, you’ll want to choose a caregiver who is familiar with these conditions. For example, if meal prep will be one of their duties, ask them if they’re comfortable accommodating special dietary requests or restrictions.

2. Licensing and Training

Each state has required licensing guidelines. Reputable home care companies ensure that all of their caregivers meet these guidelines. Go online and familiarize yourself with these regulations; it’s important to know what they entail.

Verify that the caregiver you choose has received proper training. Inquire about any additional credentials the caregiver may have obtained or any training they’ve engaged in on their own, such as certification or specialty training in Alzheimer’s or dementia care.

3. Compassion

The right caregiver is going to be professional yet nurturing and personable. Ask them why they chose elder care as their occupation; this can give you a great deal of insight into their caregiving philosophy and character.

Also, ask about their personal interests and background. They’re going to be spending a lot of time with your loved one, and visits for both parties are more enjoyable if there are shared interests.

4. Patience

It takes an exceptional kind of person to be a caregiver. Patience is one of the most essential qualities to look for, especially when seeking care for a parent with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease. Ask the prospective caregiver about a trying experience they’ve had with a previous client and how they handled it. As they answer, look for both composure and warmth.

5. Communication

Look for a caregiver with a positive attitude and good verbal communication skills. You want them to be able to communicate well with your loved one. This is especially important considering how much time they’ll be spending together. Your caregiver should keep communication lines open with you and your family about any changes in your loved one’s condition or their care plan.

Once you’ve found someone that possesses the right combination of all of these traits, learn what to expect and how to prepare to hand over the reins to ensure a smooth transition.

Providing Peace of Mind For You and Your Loved Ones

At Dependable Senior Care, our highly qualified and trained caregivers can assist your aging loved one with all their budget-friendly food shopping, meal preparation, and cleanup needs. In addition to meals, our licensed and insured professionals can assist with other daily living activities. We assist with services like personal care, companionship care, respite care, nursing assistance, and Alzheimer’s and dementia care.

Our personalized services are available 7 days a week, ranging from a few hours per day to 24-hour and live-in care. Our mission is to provide in-home, daily living assistance that supports seniors and their families in South Florida. To learn more now or schedule a consultation out of our Palm Beach, Miami-Dade, or Broward County offices, please visit Dependable Senior Care at