In simple terms, Blood Donation is a voluntary activity done by individuals to save the lives of others. There is literally no substitute of human blood other than the human blood and it is a proven fact that one unit of donated blood can save up to three human lives.
But before donating blood, it is very important to understand that who all are actually efficient enough to donate it.
- The donor must at least weigh 45 kgs or more than that.
- The body temperature must be normal i.e., 98.6-degree Fahrenheit.
- The Hemoglobin should not be less than 12.5 grams per deciliter.
- 18-65 years is the ideal age of donors.
After fulfilling the above-mentioned conditions, you should still restrain to donate blood if-
- You are not well
- You are pregnant
- You have other medical issues or you are taking medications such as antibiotics.
- You have contracted diseases like HIV or syphilis which can be transmitted.
- You have had a tattoo, body piercing recently.
- You have ever injected drugs.
Pros of Donating Blood for the Donor
1. Assisting the neighborhoods
Donating one unit of blood might save the lives of up to three individuals. Those who donate blood do a crucial service to the community. An individual's sense of well-being also increases through helping others.
2. Detecting serious health problems
Before giving blood, each donor has a quick medical examination and blood test. Doctors must perform a physical exam to rule out any potentially contagious illnesses or infections before you can donate blood. This helps in self realization of the problems you might have but did not actually know about.
3. Detecting serious health problems
Blood Donation centers need to weigh people before they give blood, this could help identify people with obesity and offer them help to manage their weight and any related health problems.
It can also identify people with a low weight, who may also benefit from counseling and advice. Thus, it leads and helps people to be self- aware about the issues related to their weight.
4. Stimulates Blood Cell Protection
Blood donation is beneficial because it encourages the production of new blood cells and, in a sense, purifies our bodies by enabling us to frequently replace our blood with new, high-quality blood that is both fresh and healthy.
5. Overall health
In 2007, researchers looked at the data of over 1 million blood donors. Among the participants, there was a (30%) lower chance of dying from any cause and a 4% lower chance of developing cancer. The authors concluded that “blood donors enjoy better than average health.” A 2015 study Trusted Source took a fresh look at the same data. After adjusting for other factors, the researchers concluded that for each annual donation, a person’s risk of dying from any cause fell by 7.5%, on average.
This may indicate that donating blood is good for a person’s overall health, but the researchers could not confirm this. However, they did point out that donating blood seems unlikely to shorten a person’s life span.
Cons of Donating Blood
Donating blood is risk-free as long as the donor and the blood bank follows standard procedures. To know about such procedures and precautions, read - Things to Know Before Blood Donation
1. Temporary Reactions
People sometimes experience tons of side effects and reactions in the body
- feeling faint
- bleeding from the needle prick
- bleeding under the skin or bruising
Almost all the symptoms must disappear in the next 24 hours. Some ways of reducing these effects are considered to be drinking plenty of fluids and eating well-diet food altogether. Have foods that increase your iron intakes such as red meat, spinach, juices, and cereals.
2. Adverse Effects
A person may experience a more serious side reaction, such as low blood pressure, muscular spasms, difficulty in breathing, fainting, vomiting, or convulsions, in rare cases. These issues are more likely to affect younger donors, those who are underweight, and those making their first donation.
3. Impact on athletic performance
According to some studies, donating blood can reduce athletic performance due to its effect on iron levels as well as the cardiovascular and respiratory systems.
However, a 2019 review concludes that there is not enough evidence to confirm this.
4. Donating blood may be painful
While it is not a very big deal, giving blood can be a little painful and requires you to wait for a moment with a needle in your arm, which can be quite uncomfortable.
5. Time Consuming
Blood donation might take time. Along with the actual operation, you will also need to take the time to do checks and complete a ton of paperwork. As a result, you will need to dedicate some time to this task, and if you are restless, you might prefer giving blood in the longer term.
Thus, donating blood is a healthful practice and so, after acknowledging the facts about blood donation, you should definitely go for it if you are eligible and comfortable with all the factors as donating blood can help people with many health conditions, such as those who:
- have internal or external bleeding due to an injury
- have sickle cell disease or another illness that affects the blood
- are undergoing cancer treatment
- are undergoing surgery, such as cardiovascular or orthopedic surgery
- have an inherited blood disorder
- are undergoing a transplant
- need treatments involving plasma or other blood products
Also now blood availability can be searched online with the help of e-raktkosh portal integrated by Hospito Blood Banks
*Author: Kunjal Jain*