Top Tips On How Your Nanny Can Care for Your Child With Special Needs

Written by Jana Angeles  

Having a child with special needs will come with its unique rewards and challenges, so hiring a nanny to take care of them is a huge step for many parents. As time goes on, you’ve felt like you haven’t been making yourself a priority due to taking care of your child. Having extra expenses can put a financial strain on families who have children with special needs as well.

Although we wish we could have more time to take on more responsibilities and duties, our kids come first above all so making the decision of hiring a nanny can drastically improve the lifestyle of families. However, you have to be prepared for the challenges and train the person you’re intending on hiring to make sure they are fully prepared for any type of situation that may arise. Here are some top tips to consider before you undergo the hiring process of finding a nanny: 

Be Honest About Their Needs 

 Of course you don’t want to scare anyone off if you have a list of demands you need to fulfil for your child, but it doesn’t hurt to be honest about them either. If you know that your child needs extra attention, you need to communicate this with any potential nannies you consider hiring.

This is because they will need to know what they’ve signed up for and make adjustments accordingly. The last thing you want is to hire someone and not be on the same page as them. Being honest about your child’s needs will narrow down the people who genuinely want to take on the role of being a caregiver for your child.  

Follow Your Gut 

It’s important to trust your gut feeling no matter what! If you have alarm bells going off in your brain over a potential nanny, give them a miss. If you feel like someone is perfect for the job, hire them straight away (after rigorous screen checking of course). We all want what’s best for our kids so being able to see through other people can help with the hiring process.   

Provide Detailed Instructions 

If you are planning on leaving your child with a nanny a couple of times a week, don’t skimp on the details when it comes to their routine, their likes and dislikes and what to do if an unexpected scenario occurs.

Although your nanny has to meet their responsibilities, providing clear and concise instructions can help them take better care of your child. These instructions don’t have to be demanding or have an overwhelming chunk of information, be mindful that these can be used for ‘just incase’ situations.  

Undertake an Extensive Screening Process 

Being safe than sorry is applicable to this when it comes to the hiring process of your nanny. You want someone responsible, trustworthy and ultimately can give the best care for your children, right?! Then going through an extensive screening process is the only way to go.

If a potential employee has ticked all the boxes when it comes to Resume, Police Checks, Working With Children Checks and First Aid, the last step is to contact and talk to their previous employers. This can give you an idea of their background and also what they’re like as a caregiver.  

Be Prepared For Medical Or Behavioural Emergencies 

Having a child with special needs can be challenging for the next few weeks with your new nanny so don’t be surprised if you have to drop everything at once to attend to their care. There will be times where your child will have unexpected meltdowns or go through behaviour that simply cannot be managed.

Let your employer know in advance that there may be instances where you have to take time off work unexpectedly. Talk through other options such as having flexi starts and finishes or being able to work remotely some days of the week. At the end of the day, your child needs you and you should be there during those tough times. 

Having a nanny to take care of your child with special needs can be a wonderful experience because it allows another person to grow a bond with them. Although the hiring process can be tedious at times, once you get to know them, you will feel at ease knowing you’ve chosen the right person.

Having that extra time to go to work and run errands around the household can help you feel less exhausted and have more time to focus on your child’s needs once you’ve had the time to rest and recharge!