After the Transplant: Taking Care of Your New Hair
As it goes with any major medical procedure, the long-term success of your hair transplant isn’t guaranteed once the doctor successfully completes the task. Hair transplant care is what we’ll be discussing in today’s article.
You see, while their ability to perform the transplant is objectively crucial, the way you treat the transplanted area on your own time will affect the healing and results in many ways.
Whether you’ve received an FUE or FUT procedure, your work starts the night of the surgery. Since you may experience discomfort for the first 24-72 hours after your procedure, we here at Modena recommend our patients take 800 mg Motrin/Advil (over the counter) at home in case of mild pain.
We also recommend patients avoid alcohol for 24-48 hours after the surgery, as well as steering clear of heavy foods during that time, since over consumption may cause nausea. Instead, we recommend you pick up lighter meals & snacks while drinking plenty of water.
Swelling can be caused by any kind of surgery, and while our patients generally do not experience much of it, we recommend icing (either ice packs or frozen corn/peas are acceptable here) your forehead for 24-48 hours to reduce any potential swelling. You can do this 4-6 times per day for 20 minutes each round. To clarify, do not ice the transplanted area.
There also shouldn’t be any crust, significant pain & discomfort, or heat coming from the transplant area, so make sure to contact the clinic that did the procedure if this begins to occur.
As you might have expected, the process of washing your hair will be something to pay close attention to during the two weeks after your surgery. Firstly, you can’t begin shampooing in general until the day after your post-op appointment. You should only use a gentle stream of water at that point, though, and avoid getting the fingernails involved in any way.
You shouldn’t do any aggressive manipulation with your fingers until at least 7 days have passed, and only start shampooing with gentle circular motions, preferably using groMD shampoo, after a full week has gone by since the hair restoration surgery. After 14 days, though, you can feel free to wash your hair as you usually do.
Starting from the day after the procedure is done, we also highly recommend using a follicle activator spray, such as the one offered by groMD, 3-6 times per day for 2 weeks post-operation.
Another suggestion we give our patients is to sleep laying down on their back. Some doctors recommend laying up, but we don’t think it makes much of a difference.
We recommend your heart rate shouldn’t get above 100 for a full 14 days after the procedure, so even light exercises like lengthy walks should be limited. As for more intense exercises like swimming, running, climbing & others, we strongly suggest waiting around two weeks. Why, you ask? Well, an increased heart rate means increased pressure around your scalp area, and that means the potential of grafts getting dislodged.
For that same reason, you should also avoid bending too far over (keep your head above your heart) for a good 72 hours.
Sometime, patients who have received this procedure at outside clinics complain of many small pimples that pop up on the head in the first couple months. This is generally uncommon and a sign of a poor hair transplant procedure. Get yourself evaluated immediately if you find you’re experiencing this, as it can create cysts and infection in the long run.
After any hair restoration procedure, there is a very small possibility of temporary thinning afterward known as Shock Loss. This is generally very uncommon in our practice, and when it does happen, it’s usually less than 5-10% of hair loss in the recipient area.
If a hair transplant is done especially incorrectly, you run the risk of permanent hair loss. This especially occurs when the person doing the procedure uses large incisions to create recipient sites; when they create these large recipient sites, they end up damaging the surrounding follicles, causing irreversible hair loss in turn.
As far as when patients should expect their results to appear, we offer a clear timeline. The hair follicles should begin shedding 1-4 weeks after the transplant takes place. The grafts will start to grow after 3-4 months, and results should start to show after 6 months. Full results can be expected after a year to 18 months.
We know we just gave you a lot of information at once; it won’t all take after you hear it for the first time. We understand that here at Modena. We have offices in Newport Beach, Beverly Hills & Las Vegas where we specialize in FUE and FUT hair restoration surgery, and we dedicate our time to answering any questions our patients have about the hair transplant process.
When you come in for your procedure at Modena, you can rest assured that you’re in experienced hands. Dr. Yazdan has been performing hair transplants for years, and he’s been featured on popular shows like Dr. Phil & The Doctors to teach people about the science & processes behind these procedures. This expertise, combined with his ability to assist patients after it’s all said & done, means that you can be confident in the health of your new hair for a long, long time.
You can find his offices in Newport & Beverly Hills in California, as well as Las Vegas. Be sure to schedule your consultation today!