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[L. rehabilitare, to restore]

1. The treatment and education that help the disabled to attain maximum function, a sense of well-being, and a personally satisfying level of independence. Rehabilitation may be necessitated by any disease or injury that causes mental or physical impairment serious enough to result in functional limitation or disability. The postmyocardial infarction patient, the post-trauma patient, patients with psychological illnesses, and the postsurgical patient need and can benefit from rehabilitation efforts. The combined efforts of the patient, family, friends, medical, nursing, allied health personnel, and community resources are essential to making rehabilitation possible. Rehabilitation (“rehab” for short) is especially helpful in patient adaptation, compensation, or functional restoration when standard medical care cannot provide additional disease-modifying therapies.
SYN: SEE: restorative care
2. In dentistry, the methods for restoring dentition to its optimal functional condition. It may involve restoration of teeth by fillings, crowns, or bridgework; adjustment of occlusal surfaces by selective grinding; orthodontic realignment of teeth; or surgical correction of diseased or malaligned parts. It may be done to improve chewing, to enhance the aesthetic appearance of the face and teeth, to enhance speech, or to preserve the dentition and supporting tissues.
SYN: SEE: mouth rehabilitation; SEE: occlusal rehabilitation; SEE: oral rehabilitation

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