What is the Rehabilitation Process? A Comprehensive Guide

Rehabilitation is a process of helping a person achieve the highest possible level of function, independence and quality of life. It does not reverse or undo the damage caused by illness or trauma, but rather helps restore the individual's optimal health, functioning and well-being. To begin the rehabilitation process, a detailed interview with the patient and other important people is conducted, followed by a comprehensive neuropsychological evaluation to arrive at a specific neuropsychological profile of the individual. This step is based on identifying strengths and weaknesses so that cognitive tasks for retraining can be developed. Cognitive tasks must be simple, practical, empirically based on theory and must allow measurement in terms of time and error.

They must also allow for modification in terms of complexity as retention progresses, and must be tailor-made for individual patients. Cognitive tasks are assigned to the patient every day for one hour, managed in gradual difficulty and the saturation signaling method is followed. Managed cognitive tasks must reach an optimal level and, once the level is maintained for 3 to 4 days, the difficulty of the task increases. Constant changes are made according to the patient's performance, and psychological behavioral mediation is performed using principles of reinforcement and contingency management. A rehabilitation process brings about improvements in the function and environment of the disabled person.

Examples include installing a ramp, elevator or railing in their environment, as well as pain management and physical and occupational therapy. Once the healing process has started, regaining movement and mobility is the next step. The main purpose of this repair stage is to gently relax the body so that it returns to its range of motion (ROM) levels before the injury, or as close as possible to those levels. Soft tissue and gentle range-of-motion exercises are important to begin this stage, so as not to extend the injury too far or aggravate it. Flexibility exercises can also help prevent long-term effects of decreased range of motion or function.

Small weights can be used during exercises if it is safe to do so, but more intensive strength training is not recommended at this time. Once your range of motion has been restored in the best possible way, regaining strength is the next stage of physical rehabilitation. Resting during recovery can cause muscle atrophy or wear and tear that causes weakness and loss of strength. In this strength phase, the goal is to minimize these losses and recover levels of muscle strength and endurance prior to injury, together with cardiovascular endurance. With the use of weight machines, strength training can be performed safely and accurately while reducing risk of aggravating injuries or running into new ones. This is an incredible advantage and makes them excellent tools for rehabilitation.

Most people are surprised to find out how their injury and recovery period can cause muscle weakness and loss of endurance. Objective measures of muscle weakness and wear and tear are commonly seen after an injury and surgery within 4-6 weeks. Minimizing muscle loss and strength deficits are important rehabilitation goals set out in your physical therapy program. Rehabilitation can be provided in many different settings, from inpatient or outpatient hospitals to private clinics or community settings such as a person's home. Specialized complex neurological rehabilitation services tend to focus on adults of working age since this group has different rehabilitation objectives compared to elderly and pediatric populations.

Rehabilitation can reduce impact of a wide range of health conditions including illnesses (acute or chronic), illnesses or injuries. Rehabilitation services are consistently among health services most severely affected by COVID-19 pandemic. Patients initially ask numerous questions, answering these questions is very important as this can facilitate patient participation in cognitive rehabilitation process. A rehabilitation process can be initiated at time of disability and continue until patient's range of functions is maintained. Clinical observation of sessions in therapeutic gym allows psychologists to identify ways in which rehabilitation therapists and patients can work together more effectively. A variety of psychological interventions have been successfully implemented to alter psychological responses, rehabilitation processes, and rehabilitation outcomes of athletes with injuries particularly knee injuries. Physical therapists are professionals in sports injuries and orthopedic rehabilitation specifically trained so you can get back to moving and maximize performance levels after an injury.

Careful soft tissue training and joint mobilization as prescribed by physical therapist is an important part of rehabilitation to regain range of motion at early stage.

Blanche Taboada
Blanche Taboada

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