If you are looking into at home senior care services to help a loved one, you probably have a lot of concerns about the process. You may be wondering how your loved one will handle having someone come into their home and whether or not they will get along with their caregiver. In addition, you may even wonder if a home senior care service is the right choice among the many available offerings when it comes to elderly caregiving.
One of the biggest factors to influence your experience is finding a good match, both with the service itself and at the individual caregiver level. In fact, some experts suggest finding a professional caregiver much in the same way one might view a matchmaking service for a romantic partner. The right match is essential for avoiding conflicts and achieving harmony.
A big part of a successful match is asking the right questions in the interview stage. While any reputable home care agency will put its caregivers through rigorous interview and hiring processes that include a host of background and reference checks, there are still some important questions you want to ask when speaking to at-home senior care services and interviewing individual caregivers.
Why Did You Choose To Work With Seniors?
Asking a person why they have decided to become a professional at-home senior caregiver can provide valuable insight about their motivation. The way that they answer is just as important as the sincerity with which they respond. Their answer will tell you whether they are someone who will take their assignments seriously and ensure that your loved one’s needs are met.
This is a good question to ask of the service’s coordinator as well as the individual caregivers that they are considering placing with your loved one.
How Often Do You Update Written Care Plans?
One good indicator of a good at-home senior care service is how often it evaluates and updates its written care plan. While many services will create some type of plan when a person first signs up, these care plans should not be static documents. Instead, they need to be flexible and designed to evolve so that they can provide an adequate level of support for your loved one as their needs change.
For many seniors, their health and cognitive ability can change dramatically in the course of just a few months, so at-home senior services and caregivers who demonstrate that they understand this and can adapt to changes are the best choice.
How Do You Communicate With Family Members?
Some senior citizens need an at-home service because their family members do not live nearby. Therefore, it is crucial to ask the home care services you are considering how they will keep the family informed about what is going on with your loved one and how you can keep in touch with them. Look out for a home care agency that emphasizes an open line of communication and will be available anytime you need them.
How Do You Handle Stressful Situations?
If you have been caring for your loved one until now or have ever taken care of anyone in the past, you will already have a good idea of just how stressful this type of work can be. There may have been moments when your love for a family member was the only thing that helped you remain calm during a particularly stressful caregiving situation.
You will want to ensure that a person who is not part of your family will handle these situations with the utmost of patience and care, whether your loved one is in a bad mood, uncooperative or simply hard to tolerate. You want to choose someone who is compassionate and professional and can handle the ups and downs that come with caregiving.
Do You Specialize In The Conditions Affecting My Loved One?
Some at-home senior care services specialize in a particular condition, such as dementia, while others can handle a broad range of concerns and match up clients with caregivers who specialize in their ailments at a more individual level. Some caregivers may have specialized or advanced training that helps them deal with particular issues such as Alzheimer’s or heart problems, for example.
If your loved one has balance issues or a history of serious falls, you may want to look for a caregiver with experience in fall-proofing the home and fall prevention. This can give you greater peace of mind that the person who is caring for your loved one is prepared to handle the types of situations they may encounter from day to day.
Reach Out To SCNOVA For At Home Senior Care Services
Shepherd’s Center of Northern Virginia specializes in helping older adults to age in place, and companionship forms a big part of our program. Offering everything from a friendly visitor program and minor home repairs to health advocacy and senior transportation services with friendly volunteers, our services can help your loved one to age well in place and stay in their home and community for as long as possible. Reach out today to learn more about our services.