You’ve probably thought about the likely results of your hair transplant time and time again. The improved confidence. The freedom to roll out of bed and not worry about hats or styling products. The feeling of renewed youth and energy. This is something you’ve likely heard about from friends who have had hair transplants, not to mention seeing the results in celebrities and in the media. However, it’s hard to imagine what the recovery process might be like.
At Look Natural Hair Restoration, we’re pleased to inform you that the recovery process for FUT and FUE hair transplants is relatively stress-free and simple. Within the first 48 hours of the surgery, the natural elasticity of the scalp retains the implanted grafts. Then, they are secured by scabs which form until the skin heals. Approximately 7-10 days after the procedure, the skin heals and the scabs start to fall off. During this time, the transplanted follicles enter a dormant phase. This means that new hair doesn’t begin to grow until almost 3 months after the surgery. It’s a gradual process. Hair continues to thicken as more follicles exit dormancy over the following months.
If you want to read about the hair transplant recovery process in general, we recommend that you take a look at our recent blog on the topic. For more information about the sleeping aspects of recovery – read on! Our experts have gathered their top tips and advice in order to help you understand this important aspect of the recovery process.
Sleep in an Elevated Position
After your hair transplant, there is a heightened risk of swelling in the area. To mitigate this risk, it is essential that you sleep with your head elevated for about 48 hours after your treatment. If there is no swelling, you can then resume sleeping without keeping your head elevated. However, if you develop swelling, we recommend sleeping with your head elevated until the swelling resolves. The best way to do this is to sleep with your head and back elevated. You can do this by using pillows to prop you up – try to reach a 45 degree angle, if possible.
Some clients have mentioned that they find it more comfortable to sleep in a recliner as it is more comfortable than sleeping with so many pillows behind them. Either way, try also not to toss and turn at night, as this can also affect the swelling. Sleeping on a recliner or a sofa is useful to prevent too much movement as you sleep. If you are used to sleeping on your stomach, you will also have to avoid doing this, to prevent swelling.
Not everyone experiences swelling after getting an FUE or FUT procedure, so if, after a few days, you don’t feel pressure around your forehead, you may be able to sleep as normal again.
Use Clean Bedsheets
Cleanliness is key to successful post-transplant results. When getting ready for bed, ensure that your bed, pillowcases and sheets are all clean. Try to use a gentle detergent that won’t irritate your skin, in order to minimize and avoid any risk of infection.
Cover Your Pillow With a Soft Towel
You may experience some leakage from your scalp during the recovery period. While your scalp is healing, you may want to cover your pillows with a clean, soft towel, in order to prevent staining of your sheets and also experience more comfort. As part of your discharge care package, we will also provide you with chux. These are protective pads that can be placed on your pillow, furniture or wherever you’re resting your head in order to protect those surfaces the first few days of healing.
Get into the Right Mindset
Sometimes, talking about sleep, worrying about sleep and thinking about sleep can really impede the process of actually getting to sleep, especially after a medical procedure. In general, try not to think about it too much and practice good sleep hygiene to give your body what it needs for a full night of rest. This includes the following tips:
- Avoid caffeine in the afternoon and evenings
- Take a break from your screens an hour or two before bed
- Take a melatonin supplement if needed
- Reduce irregular sleeping patterns, such as naps
- Avoid alcohol
Sleep is an incredibly important part of the healing process. Consistent, restful and good quality sleep enables the body to better repair and regrow tissue, bone and muscle. We recommend taking a few days off work after your hair transplant surgery, though this is not always necessary. After around ten days, patients can usually return to their life as normal – this includes sleeping as usual again! If you’re looking for something to do during this period of resting, take some advice from our recent patients! They’ve reported that they enjoy planning the hairstyles that might work for them during this time.
As always, feel free to reach out to us with any questions or comments. You can also schedule your free consultation by clicking this link.