Giving Care: Senior & Disabled Caregiver Resource Blog

Best Gifts for Rehab Patients

Best Gifts for Rehab Patients
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Having to stay in physical rehab isn’t fun for anyone, especially if your loved one has to stay there over the holidays. No matter what time of year they are in rehab, giving them a gift is the perfect way to brighten their day and remind them that you are thinking of them. However, you do need to be careful to choose a gift that will be helpful without taking too much space in their room. If you’re not sure where to start shopping, here are our expert recommendations for gifts for rehab patients:

Hospital Gowns and Socks

Regular hospital gowns are known for being cheap, disposable and uncomfortable, not to mention they make it difficult to preserve your dignity. If your loved one hasn’t been cleared to wear regular clothes yet, then they will surely appreciate an upgraded premium hospital gown such as those we sell at Silverts. All of our hospital gowns are made from super soft fabric with fully overlapping back panels to improve comfort and modesty. Throw in some fuzzy hospital socks with grips on the bottom to help keep them warm in freezing hospitals and to help prevent falls if they get up in the middle of the night. (And check out our instructions for how to put on a hospital gown.)

post op clothing gift idea
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Post-Op Clothing

Your loved one might need some transitional clothing to help them go from hospital gowns to regular clothing. Post-op hospital clothing is often designed to look like regular clothing, but it features clever innovations to make getting dressed after surgery much easier. Depending on what kind of surgery your loved one had, they might need wheelchair clothing with overlapping panels in the back or post surgery clothing with ports for medical devices. We offer lots of post operative clothing to suit different needs on the Silverts online store; browse by category to find the perfect gift for the rehab patient in your life.

Hot and Cold Therapy

Hot and cold therapy is an essential tool for managing pain during physical therapy or after surgery. Heat is great for sore and aching muscles, while cold will help to calm acute pain (especially from surgical incisions). Instead of opting for cheap disposable hot and cold packs, look for nicer reusable ones that are tailored to specific body parts such as arms, knees, thighs, lower back, etc. so your loved one doesn’t have to keep buying them. Some packs can be used for both hot and cold therapy, but they’re often more effective if you buy one for hot and one for cold.

Gift Ideas for the Elderly

Pill Organizers

Speaking of pain management, your loved one will likely have to take a lot of medications and supplements during rehab. In some cases, the staff will handle the dosing for them, but in others your loved one will be responsible for taking them on time. Giving them a daily or weekly pill organizer will help them to keep track of the dosages so they don’t accidentally double up or skip one. They might also benefit from a pill splitter if they need to take half doses. These gifts are pretty affordable, so they’re a great option if you’re on a budget or looking for small stocking stuffers for the winter holidays.

reacher grabber rehab gift idea
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Reacher Grabber

Reacher grabbers can help your loved one maintain some of their independence in rehab, even if they have limited mobility. Reachers feature a metal or plastic arm with a claw on one end and a handle that operates it on the other. The arm may be stationary or it may be adjustable to different lengths depending on the type of model. The grabber can be used to grab small, lightweight objects without having to reach up, get into a standing position or call for help, allowing your loved one to retrieve small objects on their own without waiting for an aide.

Mobility Aids

Depending what type of physical rehability your loved one needs, they may benefit from mobility aids such as walkers, canes and shower chairs. While these gifts may seem practical and unexciting, they will make a huge difference in your loved one’s comfort and safety as they focus on recovering. If you have young kids, you can encourage them to decorate the mobility aids as a craft project. Not only will this make your kids feel involved, but it will add some flair to the mobility aids and show your loved one how much you’re thinking of them.

Specialty Pillows

Getting comfortable during physical rehab can be almost impossible, and many people can’t sleep in their normal position after surgery. Thus, giving them specialty pillows for their neck, back and/or legs can be a complete game-changer for their comfort and ability to sleep. Some types of pillows to investigate include neck pillows, back wedge pillows and leg elevation pillows. Before making a purchase, be sure to check in with your loved one to see what guidance their doctor has given them about sleeping upright or keeping certain limbs elevated.

Warm Blanket

Many people struggle to get warm after surgery, and some physical rehab places keep the temperature turned down pretty warm. That’s why a cozy blanket is the perfect gift idea for rehab patients. If they already own one, they might appreciate having a familiar object around, but if they don’t, then you should definitely give them a super soft blanket to cuddle up with. While we usually love heated blankets and weighted blankets as gift ideas, you might want to skip these unless their doctor has specifically approved them — the format can cause them to overheat, and the latter can put too much pressure on incisions or injuries.

personal care items gift idea
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Personal Care Items

Winter air already dries your skin out, and spending extended time in a hospital or rehab facility will just make it worse. Unfortunately, the toiletries that these facilities offer are usually pretty harsh as well, which is why making a personal care package of your loved one’s favorite toiletries is a great idea. Definitely include some gentle soaps as well as hand cream, body lotion and lip balm to keep their skin moisturized. It’s also a good idea to include some dry shampoo so they can freshen up their hair even when they don’t feel up to taking a full shower.

Aromatherapy Gifts

Aromatherapy gifts such as candles and essential oil diffusers are excellent for stress relief as well as covering up any astringent chemical smells that might be caused by disinfectants or other cleaning products. Note that this idea is best if your loved one has a room to themselves in the rehab facility or if they are staying at home; you don’t want to accidentally trigger a roommate’s allergies. Always check with the facility before lighting candles because many places have restrictions on open flames for safety and liability reasons.

Gifts for Loved Ones in Nursing Homes

Water Bottle or Tumbler

Staying hydrated is essential for proper recovery during physical rehab, and having a nice water bottle will encourage your loved one to drink more water. We recommend choosing one with a durable double-walled construction made out of stainless steel, which will keep drinks cold or hot for hours. If they have limited upper body mobility, consider getting them a tumbler with a lid and a straw. Since they don’t have to tilt the bottle to drink it, that will make it easier for them to stay hydrated and also require less effort on their part. 

E-Reader or Tablet

Staying in a physical rehab facility may leave your loved one with many hours to fill, especially once they’re feeling well enough to stay awake all day. To help them pass the time, consider giving them an electronic device that you can load up with some entertainment to help them pass the time. Tablets or e-readers are usually better than laptops because they are lighter and thus easier to hold for long periods of time. If your loved one already has one of these devices, they might still benefit from cases, charging cords, and other tech accessories.

Entertainment Media

Speaking of entertainment, periodically loading up their device with books, TV shows and movies is a great gift idea for rehab patients. You can either download old favorites or introduce them to new media that you think they will like. Try to keep it light in tone and don’t pick anything too intense or stressful. Episodes of comedy shows are an especially good option since they might not have the focus to sit through an entire movie. If they already watch a lot of media, you might want to get them a subscription to a new streaming service so they will have some new content to get through while they convalesce.

headphones for music rehab gift idea
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Nice Headphones

On the subject of entertainment, your loved one might not be able to play music or media out loud if they have a roommate in the rehab facility. To that end, they will be sure to appreciate a set of nice headphones with noise-canceling abilities. You can choose from many different styles to suit their preferences, including earbuds vs. over-the-ear headphones and Bluetooth vs. wired models. If you think that your loved one will forget to charge them, then a wired model might be the best choice so they don’t have to worry about power.

Help with Chores

While your loved one is going through physical rehab, they won’t be able to keep up with chores such as cooking meals, cleaning the house and doing yard work. Picking up the slack is one of the best gifts that you can give them, whether you take care of these chores yourself or hire a service on their behalf. If they are staying at home, you might want to organize a meal train or chore brigade so that family and friends can establish a rotating schedule and nobody gets stuck with too much work.

Beverages and Snacks

Your loved one might not have much of an appetite after surgery, and they will probably be on dietary restrictions as well. But once they are cleared to start eating regular food again, you should definitely consider giving them some of their favorite beverages and/or snacks to vary their diet and get them interested in eating food again. You can either do a one-time gift basket or opt for a recurring subscription if their recovery is going to take a long time. If you’re not sure what they like to eat, ask their loved ones or check their kitchen to see what brands they buy.

Ready to buy a gift for a rehab patient? At Silverts, we offer a wide variety of gifts that are perfect for people recovering from surgery, accidents and more. We offer free shipping on all U.S. orders and free rush shipping on U.S. orders over $100 so you will receive your delivery in a timely manner. Plus all our products come with a 100% satisfaction guarantee, so you can shop  for gifts with confidence!

Image Credits



Olena Yakobchuk/

Leszek Glasner/

Roman Samborskyi/


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