How to Work with Your Loved One’s Caregiver

Making the choice with your loved one to find an at-home caregiver is a major decision. In doing so, you are bringing a new individual into your family member’s life who is responsible for keeping them healthy and happy. With this role, they quickly become one of the most important people in their life. As a result of this crucial relationship, it is important that you know precisely how to work with your loved one’s caregiver.

Building a healthy relationship with one another will create a healthy experience for your aging loved one, your caregiver, and yourself. We have already shared a blog post on what the caregiver can do to formulate a relationship with the family, but these are things you can do to create a better foundation.

How to Work with Your Loved One’s Caregiver

Make your expectations clear

You know better than anyone what it is your loved one needs in a caregiving service. Make a list of these requirements, and keep it on hand as you’re interviewing potential at-home care workers. Once you’ve hired one, sit them down and go over this list again as a refresher.

Never assume that your caregiver knows exactly how to fulfill each and every need. Expectations can revolve around anything from the type of care provided, to your family member’s schedule, to the type of laundry detergent you use. Whatever is important to you and your loved one, let your caregiver know about it.

Be open about any past problems

Sometimes as older adults age, their personalities can take a negative turn. This is especially common in individuals suffering from dementia or Alzheimer’s. It’s important that you let your caregiver know whether or not your loved one has the propensity to be mean or abrasive. This way they can prepare themselves for such problems.

Alternatively, they will be able to inform you if these sorts of personality traits develop while they work with your loved one. This could be a sign of cognitive decline or other illness, and catching such a problem early is crucial.

Help them get to know the care recipient

Depending on your loved one’s needs, your caregiver could be the person who spends the most time with your loved one out of anyone. They should not only be able to get along with their care recipient, but they should also understand who they fundamentally are. Set aside some time to speak with your at-home care worker and share information on who your loved one is.

Discuss what they used to do for a living, their family history, any previous health problems, and more. You should also talk about any personal preferences they have, like how spicy their food should be, what their favorite hobbies are, or any personal habits they have.


From day one, communication is key. You and your loved one’s caregiver must speak openly and honestly with one another at all times. Quality communication will be the cornerstone of your relationship. Make time to connect on a regular basis so you can reassess all of your needs and address any concerns.

Communication is about more than discussing what it is you require from the caregiver. Use this time to let them know what it is they are excelling at, as well as if there are any problems. Talk about changes in your loved one’s health, and how that might impact their needs. In addition, don’t forget to listen to the same from your care professional. You may learn an important thing or two.

Work well with your at home caregiver

Remember: a caregiver is a person, not a machine

Your loved one’s caregiver is there to do a job, of course, but they are more than just a machine that pumps out work. They are individuals with personal lives, and they deserve to be treated as such. Try to build a personal relationship with your home care worker that stretches past their responsibilities.

Learn about the caregiver’s close family and periodically ask how they are. Find out if you have any shared interests and discuss them. Send them a message on holidays to wish them well. These little gestures will go a long way in helping them feel seen, which is great for one’s mental health.

Involve them in problem-solving

Your aging parent may experience changes as they work with their caregiver. A chronic illness could bring in new medications or food restrictions. You may need to address mobility issues that your loved one’s home poses. Whatever these new challenges bring, don’t forget to consult your home care worker about them.

You know your elderly parent or other loved one. The caregiver knows home care. By working together, you’ll be able to find solutions to any problems that arise, allowing your loved one to live as comfortably and confidently as possible.

Home care in the Chicago area

If your loved one requires care in the greater Chicago area, look no further. For 30 years, Home Care Powered by AUAF has provided elder Chicagoans the support they need to live comfortably and confidently at home. Our staff is highly trained to offer clients the best in non-medical home care—whether that’s bathing, medication reminders, light housekeeping, or other activities of daily living. You never have to worry about your loved one struggling with these tasks when they have a caregiver.

If you’d rather provide care to your loved one on your own, consider joining our family caregiver program. We offer training and support so you can become the best possible caregiver for your loved one, and even get paid while doing so.

For more information on either of our caregiver programs, call us at (773) 274-9262. We would be happy to help.

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