Skip to main content

The goal of rehabilitation

  • The brain heals more slowly than many other parts of the body. Recovery from a stroke is different for each person. It can often take months or years to recover.

    Your goal is to be as independent as you can. You may learn new skills, improve your physical condition and learn how to do tasks in different ways.

    Because a person with a stroke has specific needs, recovery will be different for each person. The recovery often includes medical care, natural recovery, rehabilitation and the gradual return to your everyday activities.

    It is important to follow your health care provider’s instructions about recovery.

    Rehabilitation usually starts in the hospital. You may continue with it after your hospital stay. Together, you and members of your health care team and care circle will make rehabilitation choices before you leave the hospital.

    Rehabilitation program

    Your program may include:

    • learning about your stroke
    • learning ways to help you safely eat, brush your teeth, get dressed, bathe, do housework and go to the bathroom
    • strengthening exercises for arms and legs
    • receiving emotional support
    • testing and treatment for problems with:
      • vision
      • swallowing and eating
      • communication
      • reading and writing
      • memory, attention span and problem-solving skills
    • learning how to:
      • take medicines
      • regain bowel and bladder control
      • get in and out of a chair, bed or car
      • position yourself in bed or chair
      • get around your home and community
      • enjoy your favorite leisure activities
  • Source: Allina Health Patient EducationUnderstanding Stroke, fifth edition, neuro-ahc-90662
    Reviewed by: Allina Health Patient Education experts
    First published: 02/01/2006
    Last reviewed: 05/01/2018