Wearing a Hat After a Hair Transplant
Wearing a hat after hair transplant surgery isn’t worn just to conceal swelling, redness or a half-shaved head. The right type of hat can help individuals in a number of ways following surgery. When it comes to hair transplant surgery, it is important to understand what to expect with recovery prior to surgery, so you know how to prepare for a more successful outcome.
When it comes to wearing a hat after a hair transplant, it is important that the correct type of hat is worn so your results aren’t compromised. A loose cap is recommended so that it does not rub on the newly transplanted grafts. Beanies are not allowed as they may snag the grafts and rip them out, resulting in poor results.
One of the most common reasons a hat is worn is to conceal swelling that occurs. Swelling around the recipient sites typically peaks after 48 hours but slowly gets better as time goes on. The next common reason an individual may choose to wear a hat is to help avoid excessive sun exposure. It is recommended that sun exposure is limited after any surgery to ensure the scars can heal their best. Sun exposure can actually make the appearance of a scar more prominent. After the two-week mark, sunscreen can be used in place of a hat.
The first 24 hours after hair transplant surgery, patients are instructed to leave the wrap placed around their head. After 24 hours the bandage can be removed. Whether there’s an incision from the strip method, or tiny punches from FUE (follicular unit extraction) on the back of the scalp, it needs to be cleaned by pouring room temperature water with a small amount of hair transplant approved shampoo over the top of the head to keep the scalp clean. This needs to be done once a day for the first week.
Small pinpoint scabs will form on the top of head where the grafts were placed but come off over 7-10 days. This is completely normal and is not being caused by wearing a hat.
If you go with the FUE method, the entire back of the scalp where the donor grafts are extracted is completely shaved prior to surgery. This leads to another common reason individuals choose to wear a hat. A hat can be worn until the shaved part of the head begins to blend in with the rest of the hair.
Results from a hair transplant are not apparent right away, but while the scalp is healing and the follicles are growing in, it is a great option to be able to wear a hat during this period.