Although deciding to undergo a hair transplant is a big step, the actual procedure is low-risk and very straightforward in the hands of an expert surgeon. Many patients worry about the aftermath of hair transplant surgery – will it hurt? When can they resume their normal lives? Will people be able to tell?
Unlike many other cosmetic procedures, you’ll be able to leave the clinic soon after your surgery ends. However, as you will likely be given a mild sedative, you’ll need to arrange a lift home – driving is not advisable for the first 24 hours! If possible, book some time off work whilst you recover – ideally a week or so. Many people feel able to resume their usual every day routine right away, but some do feel a little self-conscious about going back to work before their scalp has healed.
There may be some soreness of the scalp, but this can easily be treated with painkillers provided. Swelling is also a possibility in the recovery process – especially around the forehead – and will start to ease off after a few days. Applying a cold compress to the swollen areas can help. For the first few days, the sleeping position may be awkward due to the sensitivity of the scalp, so it’s a good idea to prop your head up using a pillow that is elevated to 45 degrees. This can also help with the swelling.
Now, one of the main things you will notice post-surgery is scabbing or crusting in the recipient area – almost one for each graft inserted! Make sure not to pick at them! You should be able to wash your hair as normal after around 3-4 days, but make sure to be gentle, and avoid using very hot water or high-powered shower.
Around 1-2 weeks after the transplant, many patients start to notice some or all of the new hairs falling out. Don’t panic! This is simply the newly-grafted hair entering the resting phase of the hair growth cycle – it makes way for the new hairs to grow in starting at around 3-4 months after the hair transplant. Hair grows relatively slowly – around 1cm per month – so it will take a bit of time for it to be back to its former glory, but within 18 months you can expect to see the full results of your transplant.
Of course, if you have any questions or worries during your recovery process, our team are more than happy to help!