What to Pack for a Short-Term Rehab

Caucasian Woman Packing Sorting Her Clothes Items Stuff Shirts In A Bag Suitcase

If you or a loved one is preparing to transition from the hospital to a short-term rehabilitation center, knowing what to bring is important to make your stay go smoothly. Unlike at the hospital, where you are stuck wearing those unflattering (and sometimes revealing!) gowns, you’ll be able to wear your own clothing during your rehabilitation. And you can bring some of your favorite things from home, too.

Here are some helpful tips on what to pack—and what to leave at home—when you’ll be a patient at a short-term rehab center.

What You’ll Need for Short-Term Rehab

  • Clothing: Since you’ll likely be spending much of your day with the therapy team, make sure you have loose-fitting, comfortable clothing. Many patients find it helpful to wear pants that pull on and off, a lightweight T-shirt or top and a zippered sweat jacket. Dressing in layers is also helpful, especially if you run hot or cold. Don’t forget to include a few pairs of comfortable pajamas.
  • Footwear: Bring one or two pairs of sneakers with sturdy, nonskid soles—you want to be safe during therapy and while walking around the rehab center. The same is true for slippers you bring to wear at night. Check to be sure they grip the floors solidly and won’t skid.
  • Personal care: Since you’ll likely be at the rehab center for at least a few weeks, remember to pack enough personal care supplies. Think about those items you use to shower and get ready every day, such as shampoo, a toothbrush, toothpaste, face cleanser and a blow dryer.
  • Miscellaneous essentials: Other items you’ll want to bring with you include your cell phone charger, books, puzzle books and other kinds of busywork you might want to pass the time. A notebook and pen will be useful for jotting down questions to ask your doctor or therapist. Some people also like to pack their favorite pillow and blanket, though the rehab center will provide them if you prefer.

Finally, if you use a mobility device like a walker or cane, call the rehabilitation center to ask if you need to bring it. They may have one they prefer you to use while you are a patient.

Learn More About Short-Term Rehabilitation

If your doctor is recommending that you continue your recovery at a short-term rehabilitation center, but you aren’t sure what that means or how to find one, we can help. To find one of our rehabilitation centers near you, please visit our list of communities by clicking here.

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