Things to Know Before You Donate Blood

Things to Know Before You Donate Blood

Blood donation is an incredibly noble cause. There are numerous reasons why one should donate blood at regular intervals. Most importantly, it is not just a selfless act that can save someone’s life, but also has health benefits for the donor. However, there are certain things one should keep in mind before donating blood.

Whether you are donating blood for the first time, or have done it before, you should know and remember some key points before handing your arm over.

Why Should You Donate Blood?


Blood donation not only saves lives but also has key benefits that we are unaware of. It balances the level of iron in the body, regulates blood flow, reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease and stroke, triggers the production of new blood cells, and helps in weight loss. Moreover, donating blood had a positive effect on a donor’s physical and psychological well-being as well.

If you are planning to donate blood, then firstly get yourself registered. A person can donate blood either in a licensed blood bank, blood donation camps, or at a bloodmobile. Although the blood donation process usually takes not more than 15 minutes, the entire process right from registration, medical check-up, donation, and post-donation rest doesn’t exceed more than 30 minutes.

Are YOU Eligible For Blood Donation?


Any healthy adult, both male and female, can donate blood. A healthy individual can safely donate one unit of blood, that is, 350 ml. Men can donate safely once in every three months while women can donate every four months. However, there are certain factors you need to fulfill to be considered as a donor. These include;

Weight: The donor should not weigh less than 45 kgs

Pulse: The pulse rate of the donor should be normal (60 to 100 beats per minute)

Body temperature: Normal body temperature is 98.6°F (37°C)

Hemoglobin: It should not be less than 12.5 grams per deciliter

Blood pressure: Systolic and diastolic blood pressure should be within the normal range (120/80 mm Hg)

Age: Donors should be in the age group of 18 – 65 years

Who is NOT Eligible For Blood Donation?


You cannot donate blood if you

1. Suffer from common health problems such as cold, flu, sore throat, cold sore, stomach infection or any other infection.

2. Had any dental procedures done such as filling, cleaning, or restoration (the day before the donation). If he had an extraction, surgery, root canal, crown, root planing, gum autograft, or implant in the last three days before going for a blood donation.

3. Are diabetic and taking insulin injections to manage diabetes. However, if you have your blood glucose level under control with diet or oral medications, then you can donate blood.

4. Fall under high-risk categories such as have a history of genital ulcers, multiple sex partners or drug addiction.

5. Ever had an intravenous administration of drugs (even once).

6. Have hepatitis B, hepatitis C, tuberculosis, leprosy, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), heart disease, epilepsy, bleeding disorders, thalassemia, sickle cells anemia, and cancer.

7. Have had shots for any of the conditions such as cholera, typhoid, diphtheria, tetanus, plague, gamma globulin in the past 15 days and rabies vaccination in the last 1 year.

8. Have any tattoos or acupuncture done in the last 12 months or have had tattoo removal surgery in the last six months.

9. Have been treated for malaria in the last 3 months or are residing in malaria endemic areas from the last three years.

10. Are pregnant, have delivered within a year, or are breastfeeding

Do’s And Don’ts To Follow Before And After Blood Donation


Before you go for blood donation, here are few do’s and don’ts you need to keep in mind for a safe and healthy experience.

BEFORE BLOOD DONATION


1. Always choose a licensed blood bank to donate blood & donate blood only where doctors are available.

2. Eat something light before donating blood and hydrate yourself as it helps you to avoid weakness.

3. Avoid drinking alcohol the day prior to blood donation.

4. Do not smoke for at least 2 hours before blood donation.

5. Make sure to check whether the paramedical staff is using a set of disposable needles for every single donor.

6. Carry at least two IDs before going for blood donation.

7. Do let the doctor know about medications you are taking, if any.

AFTER BLOOD DONATION


1. Do not get it immediately after the process is over, rest for at least 5 minutes.

2. Eat something that is rich in sugar post blood donation as it can up your energy levels and prevent you from feeling weak and dizzy.

3. Increase your fluid intake for the next 24 to 48 hours as it might take around 24 hours for the body to get the fluids retrieved post blood donation.

4. Stay away from drinking aerated drinks or carbonated beverages.

5. Avoid strenuous physical exertion, heavy lifting, or pulling with the donation arm for about five hours.

6. Do not stand for a long duration and avoid any queues or public transport.

7. Eat well-balanced meals for the next 24 hours to rejuvenate your body.

8. Do not smoke or consume alcohol for at least 24 hours after donation.

9. If you feel discomfort or light-headedness, lie down until the feeling passes.

So, let us make this extra effort to save and support lives by donating blood. Make sure you are in good health when you wish to go for blood donation and take needful precautions post a donation. Stay Happy, Stay Healthy!

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