Stitches or staples are used to close the wound to heal it fast and to prevent scars. Stitches all over the body should be taken care of, but stitches in your head are exceptional. It seeks extra care as you can’t monitor it properly, risk of bleeding as there are a lot of vessels in the scalp, and you cant shower carelessly. That’s why we are here to assist you in how to wash hair with stitches in the head. It is a step by step guide including, precautions you need, what actions should be taken.
You need to take into account several factors, whether you can wash your hair or not if stitches in the head are in place.
- You should consider how to severe your wound was, you can predict it by how many stitches or staples are in place. More the stitches more severe it is.
- Just have naked stitches/ staples or have a dressing over it. If dressing is placed, what kind of dressing. Is it waterproof or not?
- Last but not least, it is the most important one. What is is your doctor’s recommendation regarding your surgery.
It would be best if you kept these things in mind before taking a shower or bath.
Scalp Staple/Stitches Removal Time
Usually, Stitches and staples on the scalp take 7 to 14 days. Of course, it depends on how big, how long the cut is, location of the cut, and at last how you take care of it. So, the question arises on how to wash hair with staples for cut on head before that period of time. In this guide, we will explain what action should be taken to wash your hair and under what conditions you should wash it.
Precautions, Instructions and Step by Step Guide for How to Wash Hair with Stitches in Head
These guidelines will help you care for laceration while washing your hair.
- It is recommended to keep the stitches perfectly dry for the first 24 to 48 hours after surgery. That means no bath or shower. But the time might vary depends on the factors mentioned above.
- However, the doctor’s verdict should be followed (if he/she says you need to wait 72 hours, you should follow that time frame). Usually, the surgeon or nurse will tell you how to care for the wound, so all keep the instruction in mind.
- But usually, after 48 hours, you can wash your hair but question is, it better to have a bath or shower?
Shower vs. Bath: It is better not to soak in water until it is healed because it softens your skin and there is a risk of reopening the wound. Henceforth, it is better to take a shower rather than taking a bath as you can control the flow and direction of water and avoid getting the wound wet.
- You should consider whether you have naked stickers or dressing over it. Most dressings are not waterproof and will soak water, which will increase the risk of infection. If it is not waterproof, consider is replacing it with a fresh one after taking a shower if it get wet.
- There are multiple ways that you can prevent your stitches or staples from getting wet.
- Before taking a shower, cover it with a thin layer of petroleum jelly such as Vaseline, as such products are water repellent and do not affect your wound.
- There are some dressings available in the market that can withstand a small amount of water. Like spray from the shower. Do not place the dressing completely underwater means don’t take a bath.
- If you don’t have access to Vaseline or waterproof dressing, use plastic bags or Rubber gloves if they can cover your wound.
- While taking shower, use mild shampoo or soap and try to make it fast as you can.
Caution: Do not use products that contain Hydrogen Peroxide or alcohol that will slow the process of healing if it encounters with the wound.
- Avoid excessive scrubbing near the affected area as it involves the risk of the opening of stitches.
Tip: It is better to have someone do it for you like it on your scalp. Hence, he/she can see it correctly rather than yourself.
- Dab your stitches using dry clean towel or cotton. Even though the wound area did not get wet, swipe it to ensure it is dry.
- If accidentally stitches get wet, simply dry it with cotton or a clean towel and make sure all the moisture around the stitches or staples is socked up.
- After a shower when the wound is dry and clean. Apply the antibiotic cream or ointments if the doctor has recommended any.
- Apply dressing over the wound if it was applied before.
In case while taking a shower or any other activities, if your staples or stitches get removed, immediately consult with your surgeon or nearby hospital.
After Stitches, Staples and Dressing are Removed.
After your stitches or staples are removed, you can take a bath or go swimming. But I should be long and try to place Vaseline over the wound to be on the safe side. Moreover, still better to avoid excessive scrubbing. You need to be cautious until your wound is fully healed.
When to Seek Medical Advice
Call your health care to provide any of these symptoms appears.
- Any sign of infection, redness, swelling, pain in the wound or pus coming from the wound, fever
- Stitches or staples have been removed and bleeding
Washing hair while stitches or staples in place is indeed a risky task. The reason behind that is your health is at stake; wound can be softened, risk of the opening of stitches, with water pus, can form. Hence the risk of infection is always there. However, we tried our best to guide you to help prevent infection while taking a shower.