Professional Training

The first thing you should look for when searching for a caregiver is that they have good training. They should have taken courses that will educate them about the specific needs of patients with cognitive disabilities. Professional training will give a caregiver the tools they need to provide the best possible service to their patients.

Experience Level

You should also look at how much experience a caregiver has when interviewing potential candidates. The more experienced a caregiver is, the more they will have been exposed to challenging situations, and so they will be better equipped to handle them. More experience also means they will likely be more comfortable on the job, which is very important. You need to try to match their experience with the needs of your loved one: easier said than done. Is OCD a disability that caregivers might have experience with? Not so much. Are skills working those facing severe autism similar to those required by someone treating someone mildly affected by autism?

Calm, Friendly Personality

The caregiver’s personality is also a very important factor to consider when making your decision. It’s important that a caregiver is able to connect with their patients, and the patient needs to trust them and enjoy spending time with them. This is much easier when they have a personality that is easy to get along with. The caregiver should be able to remain calm in challenging situations, and they should be able to get along well with many different types of people.

Responsible

Most importantly, your caregiver needs to be very responsible. They need to be able to show up to work on time, follow instructions, and make reasoned, rational decisions when challenges arise. Look at their previous job record to get an indication of how responsible they are and what they are willing to put into the job. The more you can trust your caregiver, the more they can do for you.

Has Transportation Access

It’s very important that your caregiver has access to the transportation they need to do their job properly. In most places, this means having a car they can use to get to your home and run errands, although in some cities, access to public transit may be enough. When interviewing, make sure that prospective candidates have the transportation they need to do the job properly.

These are just a few of the things you should keep in mind when looking for a caregiver for someone with cognitive disabilities. Hiring a caregiver will make a major difference in the patient’s life, and it’s definitely an investment worth making for those who can afford it. Ask your doctor or other community support resources for help finding an appropriate caregiver.