Whether it happens to you or someone you love, a stroke can be a scary experience.\nAlso known as a \u201cbrain attack,\u201d stroke can affect your physical and mental function. That\u2019s why stroke rehabilitation is vital. It can help you re-learn skills and improve your quality of life.\nStroke is a leading cause of long-term disability in the United States.\nEarly and thorough stroke rehab can help stroke victims work toward recovery.\nRELATED: Identifying Signs of Stroke\nWhat Is a Stroke?\nA stroke occurs when a:\n\nClot blocks the blood vessel that supplies blood to the brain (an ischemic stroke).\nBlood vessel in the brain becomes weak and bursts open, causing blood to leak into the brain (a hemorrhagic stroke).\n\nDepending on the part of your brain affected, a stroke can cause a range of complications, including:\n\nWeakness, paralysis, and problems with balance or coordination.\nPain, numbness, or burning and tingling sensations.\nFatigue.\nInattention to one side of the body, also called neglect. In extreme cases, you may not be aware of your arm or leg.\nUrinary or bowel incontinence.\nSpeech problems or trouble understanding speech, reading, or writing.\nTrouble swallowing.\nMemory problems, poor attention span, or trouble solving problems.\nVision problems.\nDepression, anxiety, or mood swings with emotional outbursts.\n\nWhile these symptoms can limit your quality of life, they aren\u2019t always permanent. In fact, stroke rehab can help many people recover skills lost to stroke.\nHow Stroke Rehabilitation Helps You Recover\nThere\u2019s not just one approach to stroke recovery.\nRehab can take a few different forms, depending on the part of your body or type of function affected.\nYou can start rehab as early as 24 hours after a stroke.\nYou can find stroke rehabilitation programs:\n\nIn hospitals.\nAt long-term care facilities (such as nursing homes).\nAt outpatient clinics.\nThrough home health care agencies.\n\nRehab can last as long as it takes you to start getting better. Your doctor can tell you more about these and other approaches to regaining your function and independence.\nThe UPMC Rehabilitation Institute is part of the largest rehab network in western Pennsylvania. It offers both inpatient and transitional care for many conditions, including stroke.\nSome of the most common types of stroke therapies and rehab include:\n\nPhysical therapy to strengthen motor skills and improve coordination and balance.\nMobility training to help you learn to use aids such as canes, walkers, and braces.\nOccupational therapy to help you with activities of daily living (like grooming, dressing, bathing, and cooking).\nConstraint-induced therapy to strengthen weak limbs.\nRange-of-motion therapy to decrease muscle tension and improve mobility through exercises.\nTechnology-assisted therapies \u2014 such as electrical stimulation \u2014 to stimulate weak muscles and improve motor skills.\nSpeech therapy to help you regain language, speech, and cognitive skills.\nPsychotherapy to address the emotional effects of stroke.