‘Tis the season for holiday celebrations and travel for family get-togethers! If you’ve recently undergone a hair transplant, you can enjoy this special time of year while being mindful of giving your transplant the best possible conditions for success. Under ordinary circumstances, getting off-schedule during the holidays – as well as the stress of travel, family gatherings, etc. – can leave you at risk for coming down with a cold, flu or gastrointestinal distress. Keeping in mind that a hair transplant is a surgical procedure, exercising extra caution will help you see in the new year ready to achieve the full results you’ve been looking forward to!
However, it is also important to keep in mind that the post-op instructions given to you by your surgeon need to be followed, first and foremost. Dr. Marco Barusco provides instructions based upon each patient’s unique situation. Even when two people undergo the same procedure, each has their individual medical history, background and other factors that need to be considered. We provide the following recommendations in the interest of increasing your awareness about balancing fun (and a demanding schedule) with good choices.
Take care of the surgical site – Whether you are male or female, or have had a scalp or facial hair transplant, the site of your transplant is still healing. While the first two weeks post-surgery are the most critical, don’t assume you can engage in all activities soon thereafter. If you travel, it’s easy to disrupt your skin/hair care regime. Be sure you pack the products your doctor has prescribed or recommended, and use them accordingly. It may seem more convenient to use your brother’s shampoo, but it could be too harsh for your scalp.
Likewise, if you’ve been prescribed or instructed to use a topical medication or treatment, apply it as closely as possible to the time of day you’ve been using it at home. Skipping one treatment typically does no long-term harm, but hit-or-miss compliance is more likely to compromise long-term results. Don’t get so caught up in your activities that you fail to take the extra time necessary.
Consider your physical activities – If your plans include a good amount of outdoor activities – such as visiting theme parks or the beach, or golfing – wear a hat or loose-fitting cap to avoid sunburn on the scalp. Winter sunlight is still strong in Florida, which you know if you live here, or need to know if you plan to visit. As for swimming, the general advice is to not swim in chlorinated pools during the first 14 days after surgery, as chlorine (and other pool chemicals) may damage the grafts. Do not dive. However, ask your doctor if it’s safe for you to take a dip after two weeks have passed. Again, no two people heal at the same rate.
Be aware of other physical activities. If your family get-togethers include backyard football, “wrassling” or tumbling around with the grandkids, avoid contact with your scalp, or whichever area has had a hair transplant. Don’t let curious young ones reach for your emerging beard, for example!
Don’t overindulge – It’s human nature to give yourself a “pass” during the holidays. People tend to eat more than usual, as well as indulge in a greater amount of high-fat, high-calorie foods. There’s also a tendency to snack frequently, and increase alcohol consumption. Holiday binging takes a toll on health and well-being – which, in turn, affects your ability to heal and promote healthy hair growth. Just remember the considerable investment you made in your hair transplant before reaching for that extra cocktail or helping of baked ham!
Writing for Forbes, Noma Nazish provides valuable advice on staying healthy during the holidays. In addition to eating mindfully, Nazish points out the importance of maintaining proper hydration. Because water accounts for 60% of our body weight, we need to stay hydrated to maintain this ratio. Water is also necessary for several bodily functions, including maintaining cell fluids and delivering nutrients. Limit your intake of high-calorie drinks like eggnog, martinis and margaritas, she writes, and alternate your cocktails with a glass of water in-between.
Also, Nazish writes, boost your immune system with a variety of fruits and vegetables – which deliver vitamins and minerals. And make sure to get proper sleep. Need we say that following this advice throughout the year will pay off in improved health and overall well-being, as well as ideal conditions for optimum healing and hair growth?
What results can you expect to see by now?
Our February 2019 blog post – “New Year, New You” – features an interview with Dr. Barusco in which he covers questions about hair transplant procedures, healing time and what results patients can expect if they want a good amount of new growth for end-of-year holiday time.
“Patients choose this time of the year to treat their hair, so that their hair will be better for the following holiday season,” says Dr. Barusco, who observes that people tend to have realistic expectations regarding the amount of time required to heal from surgical procedures and to begin seeing hair growth – particularly growth that reaches the patient’s desired length.
“I think part of the reason is the information available about hair transplants on the internet. But sometimes, we find ourselves having to educate patients on what to expect as far as healing and results, so they may plan their life events accordingly. These patients need to be educated very well about short- and long-term expectations in order to correctly prepare them for what is coming and for the achievable results, so that they are happy in the end.”
So if your hair transplant is relatively recent, taking conscientious care of yourself this holiday season will increase your success for having a fuller head of hair – or fuller beard – to impress your family and friends at next year’s celebrations. Keeping your eye on the long-term prize will help you stay better focused!
If you’re considering a hair transplant and researching surgeons for their reputation, experience, results and standing within the medical profession, we invite you to explore this website to learn more about Dr. Barusco and the advanced procedures he performs. Dr. Barusco’s long list of accomplishments, notable artistic ability and successful surgical team make Tempus Hair Restoration a renowned practice worldwide.
Dr. Barusco also conducts virtual consultations for those who can’t travel to one of our 16 Florida locations, and our office will arrange travel and accommodations for out-of-area patients. Contact us to schedule your free consultation with Dr. Barusco. We look forward to meeting you and discussing your options.