You search the earth high and low to find the perfect caregiver for your baby, but can you spot red flags that your childcare provider may a bad choice?

Is it time to ditch your caregiver?

Short of setting up a nanny cam, there are signals you can look for without having to toss your sitter's privacy out the window. From watching signals from your youngster to clues directly from your babysitter, discover five signs of a bad babysitter.

Your child doesn't like the babysitter

Does your child whine when he hears that the babysitter's on her way? Or, have you noticed your kiddo withdraws when he hears her name? You may want to rethink your childcare choice. "I usually will have a 'trial' period because if my children aren't comfortable with a sitter, I won't keep that sitter either," reveals Jennifer Austin, thejenaustinreport.com. Although you aren't looking for your child's caregiver to replace you, there should be trust and an eventual bond between your child and the person spending time with him when you're away.

Your kiddo is not kept clean

Whether your youngster is sporting dirty hands or is looking like a hot mess at the end of each and every day, it may be a sign of a bad babysitter. Simple tasks like cleanliness and sanitation are a non-negotiable when it comes to tending to your little one.

Your babysitter isn't punctual

A few minutes late is understandable, but when your caregiver's tardiness is making you late for work or important appointments, it may be time to give her the boot. "I switched sitters when mine didn't wake up in time and made me late for work," shares Austin.

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Your child has been in too many accidents

Your little one's safety is the most important thing, so when it comes to small mishaps that end in your kiddo with a Band-aid or trip to the urgent care, it's likely that your babysitter isn't watching over him as closely as she should. Although accidents happen, you should feel that your kid is safe when in the hands of another caretaker.

Your childcare provider ignores your requests

From your youngster's schedule to not letting him indulge in sweets before lunchtime, a habit of breaking the rules or guidelines you've set for your kiddo is a sign of a bad babysitter. It's true that you should trust that your childcare provider knows what she's doing when it comes to the caretaking, but caring for your child should be a partnership, not a source of friction between the two of you.

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go with your gut when finding the perfect care

Now that you know the five signs of a bad babysitter, how do you know when you've found the golden goose egg of childcare? "The perfect babysitter will make your children laugh while keeping their tiny hands and faces scrubbed clean; shuttle them from dance class to karate; and make a mean peanut butter-banana sandwich," advises Allison VanNest, director of public relations, GetHired.com. In the end, your youngster needs to love his caregiver as much as you do so hold high standards and go with your gut when finding the perfect care for your baby, toddler or grade schooler.

Discover more tips on finding the right babysitter

Choosing a teenage babysitter
Keeping your babysitter happy
Setting babysitter expectations

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Comments on "5 Signs of a bad babysitter"

Random guy February 16, 2014 | 9:06 AM

I have kids who can't stand their babysitter. She doesn't give my kids food and we are forced to bring snacks from home since she is a cheap -------. She is like a evil stepmother because she feeds her niece and nephew whatever their snobby hearts desire. She has to take care of them even though they are 15 and 17. Get a life! We will hopefully switch soon.

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