According to the Seager Medical Group, there are many misconceptions about hair plugs. People tend to believe that they’ll end up with cartoonish looking hair plugs that look like something found on a doll. This isn’t the case. Need proof? Look closely at the heads of Mel Gibson, Elton John, David Beckham, and even Matthew McConaughey. All of them have had hair plugs – and the results look very natural. The key here is the care provided after the procedure is complete. You’ll need to do several things, as well as understand how hair transplant surgery works.
The Basics of Hair Transplants
Hair transplants differ from general organ transplants or joint reconstructions in a very important way. Those complicated procedures rely on donor organs and pieces of tissue from a different person than the one receiving the transplant. Hair transplants, on the other hand, actually use hair from your own head. This makes the transplanted hairs look very natural and blend nicely in their new location.
Types Of Hair Transplants
Another difference lies in the multiple types of hair transplants available. You have your choice of two procedures: follicular unit extraction and strip harvesting. The former involves removing individual follicles from your head. They are then transplanted to the thinning areas of your scalp. This form of surgery has a quicker recovery time – 7 days – although the procedure takes longer and is more expensive. The other type of hair transplant, strip harvesting, has a longer recovery period, but it costs less. In this procedure, the surgeon will remove a very thin strip of hair from your head and then break it down into individual follicles. Those are then grafted onto the scalp. The main reason for the two-week long recovery period is due to the area where the follicles are removed. That strip of missing skin will take a while to heal properly, although it won’t be noticeable at all during that time.
Once your hair transplant procedure is complete, your surgeon will give you some very specific instructions that must be followed. If you go against your doctor’s orders, you may end up with an infection or have issues with the transplanted follicles. You’ll have to use a special shampoo and may end up taking pain medications and antibiotics, just to ward off any problems. If you chose to have a strip harvesting procedure, then you will need to return in order to have your stitches removed (the ones from the strip that was removed, not the ones that graft the transplanted follicles in place.) Generally, these aftercare procedures also involve sleeping in a specific position and properly caring for your scalp.
After the first seven to ten days, the hairs in the transplanted follicles will fall out. Don’t panic – this is supposed to happen. Once they start growing in again (usually right away), they’ll blend in with the rest of your hair naturally. You won’t see the final results for between six to nine months, but the wait will be worth it.