A hair transplant can be a transformative experience that dramatically improves your self-confidence and quality of life. After your hair restoration procedure, there are some things you should do to protect your scalp — and your investment.
For the best results after a NeoGraft procedure, follow these important steps for your hair transplant post-operative care to give your newly transplanted follicles what they need to thrive.
#1: Follow your doctor’s orders.
Unlike traditional hair transplants, NeoGraft uses a minimally invasive, state-of-the-art technology called follicular unit extraction (FUE) to harvest healthy hair follicles. Gentle pneumatic pressure is used to individually extract the follicles, which are then implanted into the area of your scalp where you want more hair.
Because no scalpel or sutures are used in the procedure, there is no chance of scarring, and recovery is generally quick and painless. However, immediately after the procedure, your scalp may be somewhat tender. Over-the-counter pain medication may be recommended for several days to treat minor pain.
Your doctor may have you wear a bandage over your scalp for a day or two following the procedure and may also prescribe an antibiotic or anti-inflammatory drug as a precaution. Most people are back to work just two to five days after hair restoration surgery.
#2: Protect your scalp from the sun.
The sun’s damaging UV rays can negatively impact your skin after your hair restoration procedure. Your scalp is even more vulnerable than other areas to sunlight after surgery, as are the hair follicles themselves.
Transferred follicles take about nine days to become permanently embedded below the skin’s surface, but the sun’s UV rays can cause redness, discoloration and discomfort for several weeks — sometimes months — following surgery. Remember to wear sunscreen every day after your hair transplant procedure and cover your head with a solid-colored hat for even better protection.
#3: Hold off on the shampoo.
You should not shampoo your hair immediately after your hair transplant procedure. Most doctors recommend waiting at least two days after the transplant to wash your hair. Shampoo can irritate the grafts and disrupt the healing process. You should also avoid coloring or cutting your hair for at least three weeks.
Once you have been cleared by your doctor to shampoo your hair, use a very mild shampoo like baby shampoo. The direct heat from hair dryers can damage healing hair follicles, so let your hair air-dry for at least the first week after surgery. The area of scalp around the grafts and at the donor site may also be numb after surgery, so you could unknowingly overheat your scalp.
#4: Continue maintenance.
Medical treatments such as Minoxidil, Finasteride (the generic name for Propecia) or Rogaine might be recommended to some patients as part of their hair transplant post-operative care and continued maintenance. These drugs can help to solidify the transplanted follicles and slow the loss of surrounding hair.
#5: Sit back and watch your new hair grow!
Hair grows in cycles, and your newly transplanted hair follicles will fall out within the first two to three weeks after surgery. This is completely normal and helps make way for new hair to grow. You should begin to see new growth within a few weeks of the procedure.
Most patients see 60% of their new hair growth after six to nine months. For some, it may take 12 to 18 months to see the full results. It is important to be patient.
Remember, hair will not regrow at the donor site because the hair follicles have been completely removed from underneath the scalp’s surface. Don’t be alarmed! Your skilled technician will have harvested follicles from an area of your scalp that has an abundance of healthy hair. The hair surrounding the harvested follicles will fully cover the follicles that were moved; you won’t even notice they are gone.
Though there may be minimal pain immediately after your hair transplant procedure, this mild discomfort is well worth the many benefits of the surgery. The result of a NeoGraft hair transplant is a naturally restored head of hair that can help you regain your self-esteem and confidence. And best of all, the results are permanent!
To learn more about how to care for your scalp after your NeoGraft hair transplant — or for more information on how to plan for your procedure — call our experienced team at NeoGraft Dallas today.