Hair restoration or transplantation is quiet a delicate process and it is essential to understand its pros and cons before opting for it. It is equally necessary important to understand the operative nature and the procedure completely to get the best and desired results. The positive hair transplant results are encouraging people in large numbers to opt for this procedure.
Notably, hair transplant is the only permanent solution of hair loss. It requires the surgeon to take hair follicles from the side or back of the scalp and then transport them to the bald area. With such great technology and less scaring, there is perhaps no reason to remain BALD! No wonder, people are opting to look beautiful, younger and smarter with a head full of hair.
Are you the right candidate for hair transplant?
Hair transplant makes your appearance better, but not everyone is a good candidate for the procedure. Here are some of the traits of an ideal candidate for hair transplant:
- Men above 25 who have been losing hair due to male pattern baldness since 5 years now.
- People who understand that even after the procedure their hair fall might continue, these men will have to continue medications even after surgery to retain hair.
- Men or women who have lost hair due to some injury or burns.
- Men or women who lost their hair in some other cosmetic procedures.
- Men who have now formed a set pattern of baldness and now wish to look younger and better.
Instructions before hair transplant procedure
Once you decide to opt for hair transplantation, you would require abiding by few important instructions to smoothen the surgical process:
- As the foremost step, you will be completely shaved off on the day of the procedure.
- Should stop using any medication a day prior to the procedure. Minoxidil (Rogaine) will need to be stopped 10 days before though.
- If you consume any vitamins or supplements then stop taking it a week before.
- Avoid intake of any painkillers before the process.
- Restrict yourself from alcohol 48hours before the surgery.
- Smoking should stop a week before the procedure.
- You shall be administered mild sedation.
- The candidate must take shower the same morning before the procedure.
- One must come in loose and comfortable clothes.
- If you are taking medications, consult with Dr Bhatti and let him know much in advance.
Instructions during the Hair transplantation or restoration
Understanding clearly the concept and procedure of hair transplant is important. As a patient, you should be clear in your mind about the expected results. Here are the other important instructions for the surgery.
- Just take a glass of milk or juice at 6.30 AM on the day of the procedure. Avoid any caffeinated drinks, as these drinks may increase bleeding and sensitivity to medications. The patient will get breaks in between the procedure. Breakfast will be served after harvesting is over around 10 AM and lunch around 1.30 PM
- Keep taking routine medications like blood pressure or diabetes medicines in consultation with Dr Bhatti , our anesthetist and your treating doctor.
- Wear comfortable and front open clothesto the clinic.
- One should remove all jewelry and contact lenses before coming for the procedure.
- One can get and enjoy music during the surgical process.
Instructions you need to take post surgery?
You should care to take few precautions to keep your transplant intact and safe after the surgery:
- There will be a few medications and instructions regarding aftercare. You will get oral medications and a medication to apply.
- The donor site may bleed if you hit your head against a car door or accidentally elsewhere for upto 24hrs after the procedure. But you just need to press it with a clean cloth or a gauze piece. This will be provided in the post care kit.
- Keep the head elevated while resting or sleeping.
- Use only the prescribed shampoo/ lotion given by your doctor for 10 days after surgery. After 14 days you may get to your normal hair care and washing routine.
- After 5 days you may beautify your hair by combing it properly if you have had the no shave procedure done. Mostly all hair are trimmed down to #1 size. You can color your hair after 2 weeks. Dye can be applied to transplanted areas only after 4 weeks.
- Avoid alcohol for approximately 3 days after the procedure as long as you are on antibiotics.
- Do no smoke for at least 2 weeks before and after.
- Eat a normal diet and food and drink plenty of water at this time.
- Do not indulge in any strenuous or physical activities till one week after the procedure.
- Do not go out in the sun without a hat till 3 weeks after the transplant procedure. Always wear a hat till the incisions are healed. Keep using sunscreen for a few months even after the incisions have healed.
- Do not enter swimming pool that has chlorine water at least in the first 3 weeks of the procedure. It is also not safe to swim in the sea during the same time.
What should one expect from the procedure?
- Numbness: There might be Numbness or tingling sensation at the top or back of the head, which is normal and would take a few weeks to resolve and it would heal on its own.
- Natural hair growth: A crust forms on the transplanted hair, which would fall out within 5-8 days from the procedure. Do not get scared as these are not the actual hair; the follicles remain intact in the scalp. This will go on for 2 weeks. New shaft will grow within 4 months and these shafts will be more natural and will continue to grow like natural hair.
- Use minoxidil: 2% Minoxidil is to be started once a day after 14 days of the procedure once the crusts are off. After this switch to 5% Minoxidil for 5 months post procedure. If the use of minoxidil causes redness or irritation stop using it immediately for a week and then you may discontinue and seek Dr Bhatti’s advice.
- Laser light treatment: WE do not advise Laser therapy after hair transplant since its use has not been scientifically corroborated. It is a 30 min session and is completely a painless treatment.
- Have patience: You need to take a DEEEP Breath when you are impatient in the recovery procedure. It can be disturbing and nerve wracking going through the phase of shedding and then waiting for the hair to grow! . You might also get acne or pimple on the scalp. In any such case, apply warm soaks and antibiotic ointments to heal it. Consult your doctor too.
- Don’t panic anyway: You might have a slightly pink scalp, which would eventually heal and there is nothing to be bothered about.
Hair transplant has tremendously evolved in the last few years. During this period many new procedures have come and a few procedures have gone obsolete. FUE procedure is the most popular, highly recommended and preferred way for hair transplantation. Follicular unit extraction is a single step procedure for which the surgeons use magnification and finely tuned equipment to deliver the best results.
For best results, it is always wise to follow the pre and post surgery instructions strictly.