What is Neurological Rehabilitation?


Neurological rehabilitation occurs under the supervision of a doctor, or a team of doctors, and is designed to improve the well-being of a patient by reducing the symptoms of a disease, injury, or disorder of the nervous system. 

Some conditions that may benefit from neurological rehabilitation include: 

  • Degenerative disorders like Parkinson’s disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), Alzheimer’s disease, or multiple sclerosis.
  • Neuromuscular disorders like Bell’s palsy, carpal tunnel syndrome, muscular dystrophy, or myasthenia gravis. 
  • Vascular disorders like ischemic or hemorrhagic strokes.
  • Infections like meningitis, encephalitis, or polio.
  • Functional disorders, including migraine, dizziness, or seizures. 
  • Brain and spinal cord injuries related to trauma.


Not all patients entering into a neurological rehabilitation program have a diagnosis. Some symptoms that may warrant the need for neurological rehabilitation include: 

  • Difficulty speaking, walking, swallowing, eating, dressing, or bathing.
  • Muscle weakness or pain, abnormal muscle tone.
  • Impairments in thinking, memory, vision, or eye-hand coordination. 


The goal of a neurological rehabilitation program is to help the patient achieve the highest level of independence possible. To help a patient improve their quality of life, a neurological rehabilitation program may include some of the following:

  • Assistance with eating, dressing, bathing, cooking, and other daily activities.
  • Therapy to improve cognition, including concentration, attention, memory, and speech.
  • Anxiety and depression counseling, emotional support.
  • Pain management.
  • Exercises to improve mobility, muscle control, gait, range of motion.
  • Community support groups, retraining of social skills.


Often, a neurological rehabilitation program is comprised of a team of professionals working together to help a patient return to the highest level of functioning possible. Each professional provides different treatments to help the patient find relief from their symptoms. A rehabilitation team may include some of the following professionals: 

  • Physical therapists help patients regain mobility and allow them to perform physical tasks as much as possible. 
  • Occupational therapists help patients regain independence by doing as much as they can on their own. 
  • Speech-language pathologists help patients with language, speaking, and swallowing.
  • Neuropsychologists help patients adjust to their new skill levels, and provide therapy and stress management techniques.