While there are very few things that you cannot do post hair transplant, there are a number of things you should avoid or take care with to ensure the health and strength of your newly implanted follicles. You will be given personalised aftercare instructions immediately after the hair transplant procedure, and again before you leave to return to the UK, however, having an understanding of what to expect will ensure that you fully understand the precautions and care you will need to take to truly enhance the results.
What Can I Expect After My Hair Transplant?
Immediately after the procedure, you may experience some pain or discomfort, but this is a crucial time in which you should take care of both the recipient site and the donor sites. It’s not uncommon to see some light swelling at first, though this typically goes away within 24 hours. While it is possible to go back to everyday activity almost immediately, taking the opportunity to relax and recover from the procedure can give you the chance to let the antibiotics and painkillers work, and allow the swelling to go down – this can also be helped with further medication if necessary, which your surgeon will discuss with you.
In the days following the surgery, the discomfort will subside and you will be able to return to our daily schedule. You will need to care for your scalp to continue to fight the chances of infection or damaged follicles, and you can do this in a number of ways.
The first is to sleep with your head elevated for the first few nights post-procedure. This will not only work to reduce the swelling, but it can lessen the discomfort. Sleeping on your back can keep the pressure off of the recipient areas, however, it’s important to take the donor area into consideration. It will also need to be protected and kept elevated to ensure that it heals correctly and with minimal, if any scarring.
Staying in areas that are room temperature or similar can also prove beneficial, by preventing sweating. Sweat can cause irritation to open wounds, and while your scalp is healing from the FUE treatments, they are particularly prone to this. Avoid extremely hot or cold temperatures where possible and try and protect your scalp with hats or suncream if this isn’t possible.
What Can’t I Do After My Hair Transplant?
There are very few things that you shouldn’t do post hair transplant, however, there are precautions that you can take to promote better healing and hair growth. You can return to work within a few days, or sometimes even immediately if you work a desk job or one that doesn’t require strenuous activity. For those working in active jobs, it’s best to wait two weeks or more until you fully return to your daily work schedule.
On a similar strand, it’s best to avoid sports during the first 90 days following your surgery. While some sports can be played within a month, contact sports and those requiring helmets or headgear should be left as long as possible. Any activities requiring perspiration are best avoided for the first week or two to prevent irritation. If you are unsure whether you can take part in a particular activity, speak to your surgeon.
It’s also important to ensure that you do not scratch the area, even if it begins to itch. Scratching can delay healing and cause the small incisions to either re-open or become worse. If the itching does become difficult to bear, spraying cool water over your scalp can help to soothe the irritation.
If you begin to lose hair after your transplant, don’t worry – this is a normal side effect of transplants. The loss of hair, particularly in unshaven hair transplants, is known as shock loss (Telogen effluvium) and is usually a temporary concern.
If you aren’t sure, you can speak to your host over the phone to settle your mind on everything from how to wash hair properly post hair transplant, to any side-effects you may experience throughout the healing process.
When Can I Wash My Hair Normally After My Hair Transplant?
The question ‘when can I wash my hair normally after a hair transplant?’ is one that our surgeons face regularly at Longevita and one that comes with a simple answer:
Immediately after the surgery, and before the first time you come to wash your hair, you can spray water over your scalp to keep it moisturised but it is best to change your hair wash routine throughout the first couple of weeks. On the morning after your surgery, you will be encouraged to wash your hair and scalp around three times. Your surgeon may provide assistance with the first wash in order to show you how to wash the transplanted hair properly and will provide you with a recommended shampoo to use throughout the initial couple of weeks.
Following the first day, you will need to wash your hair twice a day for a week to gently wash away any scabbing or crusting as your scalp heals. You will be provided with full instruction on the best ways to massage your scalp, including the ideal amount of pressure. As the scabs fall out, you can return back to your normal hair washing routine – this is typically after 10 days.
For those concerned about haircuts, you will be able to visit your hairdresser within a month of your procedure for a wash and cut and provided that your scalp has fully healed, it may even be possible to dye it. If you’d prefer your new hair to begin to grow before this, you should see new growth around ten weeks after the procedure.
Caring for your scalp post hair transplant is an important part of the process. While we have provided an overview as to what to expect, you will be provided with full aftercare instructions by your surgeon, and support by our aftercare team for 12 months after your initial surgery to ensure that you will be getting healthy and natural results.
For more information regarding the procedure, or to book a free consultation, call on 02036 916 851 or fill in our form online.