Data suggests that hair transplantation procedures are highly successful. With advanced techniques such as Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE), a patient can expect 95–100% of transplanted hair to remain on the scalp, with up to 80% visible in the first three to four months. So, you can have confidence in your procedure. But there are a few things that you should keep in mind if you want to fully maximize the procedure’s success. Research well the clinic you will choose and the surgeon to whom you’ll entrust your operation. Discuss your expectations, desires, and needs, as many of these initial conversations can impact not only what you will end up paying for but also the success of your final results. As always, before any procedure, you should be in general good health and not be indulging in activities like drinking or smoking, which have been shown to produce complications. Most importantly, you should prioritize your recovery time during which your newly transplanted follicles will begin to acclimate to their new locations.
So, what are some tips you can follow to maximize the success of your transplantation procedure?
1. Rest: The first thing you want to do is prioritize rest for the first 24 hours. This is the period during which your scalp will be most sensitive. You should avoid any activity whatsoever and dedicate yourself to rest.
2. No exercise or vigorous activities: You should avoid exercise and other strenuous activities that will increase blood flow to the scalp for at least 72 hours after your surgery. Remember, your scalp is in the process of healing, and you want to make sure you do not bleed more than the procedure required. Exercises like sit-ups, push-ups, cardio like running should all be avoided. You should also avoid performing motions that require you to bend over. In the same vein, you should avoid any activity that causes you to sweat, which, like bleeding, might interfere with the healing process and possibly delay or complicate the recovery process.
3. Avoid headwear the first week after surgery: It is important that you avoid headwear and any accessory that puts pressure on your scalp as it heals from its procedure. It is recommended that you pass on wearing anything on your head for the first week following your surgery. Applying pressure of any sort is likely to damage the grafts, which may compromise the results of your surgery.
4. Avoid washing your hair for at least 72 hours: For the first 72 hours of recovery, you should avoid washing your hair as your scalp is still in the tender stages of healing. Feel free to wash your hair only after this period has ended. Nevertheless, be careful not to wash your hair in such a way that you put too much pressure on the scalp. For its first few washes, you should lather up shampoo and water in a small container and pour the mixture over your head. Wash it off with water but make sure not to put your scalp directly under the showerhead. As we mentioned above, any pressure on the scalp may dislodge the follicles.
5. Avoid alcohol and smoking before and after the procedure: You should avoid drinking alcoholic beverages for at least five days after the procedure. Scabbing is a natural step in the scalp’s healing, and alcohol has a blood-thinning effect which may exacerbate bleeding and prevent the formation of scabs. Similarly, you should avoid nicotine since nicotine tends to constrict the blood vessels and limits the amount of blood flowing to the organs. This, again, slows down the scalp’s healing and may contribute to fewer grafts integrating into your scalp.
Certainly, these tips will work best when you couple them with attentive aftercare practices. Remember to be especially careful with your hair follicles and wait until the hairs have thickened before you style your new hair with products or electronic appliances. Above all, remember that hair transplantation requires the use of grafts and that, as you heal, the follicles will try to acclimate to a new environment. Because you will have bled, your scalp will develop scabs that will tempt you to scratch it. Avoid this as much as you can, as it may dislodge the newly grafted follicles!
Care4Hair guarantees that if you take care to follow these tips, you can maximize the success of your hair transplant so that you can enjoy your new look. Don’t hesitate to get in touch with the surgeons at Care4Hair if you have any questions!