How To Set Expectations For The Rehabilitation Process

Individuals who require rehabilitation services often wonder what they should expect from the process. The nature of rehabilitation can vary dramatically, as can the potential outcomes. Setting expectations is wise, but what should a person base their expectations on?


The necessary time for rehabilitation services is one of the biggest variables. Some folks may need a few sessions to absorb some basic knowledge about how to deal with joint issues or manage injuries. Others could require months or years of support. You should talk with the doctor who recommended rehabilitative care so you can get a sense of what their expectations are.


Rehabilitation varies based on an individual's needs. Someone who requires elderly rehab care following surgery, for example, may need significant care. Especially if their healing process is taking a while, the process has to go as fast as their body will allow. Although it's important to push a bit, they will need to follow their rehab specialist's advice to avoid creating more problems than the process can solve.

Preexisting Issues

Many people will come to rehabilitation with preexisting issues. This can affect how long it will take to determine a routine. Likewise, it can influence what the options will be. If someone has severe arthritis, for example, their recovery from joint surgery is going to be different than the process for someone who has no preexisting conditions. Professionals may have to develop routines for both the current problem and the older one.

Cognitive Function

Rehabilitation services often require patients to follow instructions and routines. Many factors can limit an individual's cognitive function, though. If someone has suffered a brain injury, they will likely need more time to recover from that while also absorbing instructions. Similar issues can affect elderly rehab care cases if a person exhibits signs of dementia or memory loss.


The more issues involved in a case, the more challenging rehab will be. Consequently, it is prudent for individuals and family members to set expectations accordingly. If age-related issues accompany accident injuries and subsequent surgery, that's going to call for a more complicated recovery program. The expected time will almost certainly be longer, and there may be some setbacks along the way. The important thing is to focus on making progress over time.

Contact a local rehabilitation service, such as Visiting Angels, to learn more about what to expect during your rehabilitation process.