Guidlines for blood donations

Blood Donation

The blood donation occurs when a person voluntarily has blood drawn and used for transfusions or made into medications by a process called fractionation or in simple words, to transfer it into the body of the one who has fallen deficient to the blood components due to some complications. There are four blood types: Type A, Type B, Type AB, and Type O. There are also positive and negative types of each blood type. It is important to the person receiving a blood donation that the right type be used. Otherwise, the blood can clump and cause clots that can be fatal. Type O negative is in demand because they are called the “universal donors”. All blood types can receive a blood donation of Type O negative blood.

Why you must donate

Blood makes up about 7% of your body’s weight and an adult of average weight has about 10 to 12 units of blood (1 unit = 350 ml). The human blood is the gift of life. There is no substitute for human blood and therefore, it can’t be manufactured through any artificial process. Every day, children battling cancer, a mother giving birth, many men injured in a road accident, people having emergency surgeries etc. are examples of people who need donated blood. Sometimes, a single car accident victim can require as many as 100 units of blood. In India, 8.5 million units of blood are required in a year, but only 5.5 million units are actually available. 60% of the population is capable of donating blood, but only 5% of them actually does.

In the developed world, most blood donors are unpaid volunteers who give blood for a community supply. However, in India, the blood donations are deemed necessary if a family member of dear one requires emergency supply. Also, many organizations and social groups organize blood donation camps. Still, India falls short of the required supply necessary to save lives. Therefore, everyone who is eligible for a blood donation, must donate.
Recovery of the one unit of the blood you Donate

Blood volume returns to normal level within 48 hours after blood donation. Usually not more than 350 ml of blood is collected in one donation. This is roughly less than 7% of the total blood volume in an average healthy person. Male has 76ml per Kg body weight and female 66 ml per Kg. No ill effect will happen upto a blood loss of 12ml/Kg body weight.

Advantages of donating blood

Blood donation reduces the chances of a heart attack because it thins out the blood. 70-80 ml of red blood cells get destroyed on their own every 120 days, and the bone marrow manufactures new ones. So, donating blood in no way interferes with your body system. Disadvantages of donating blood and its effect on your health If the fear of the syringe is not a great excuse, then there are no long term disadvantages of donating blood for a person who qualifies the standard conditions required for the eligibility to be a donor. You might feel a bit dizzy for a while, but that disappears within almost 30 minutes of the donations.

Misconceptions about Blood Donation

Donating blood makes me feel low
Blood donation is a painful procedure.

True Facts

    It takes a day or two to replenish the fluid volume in the body and three months for the regeneration of red cells to donate more blood.
    Donating blood is not painful at all. One only feels a slight pinching sensation when the needle pricks the arms.
    Donate blood frequently will lower my body’s immunity level.
    Donating blood frequently can fluctuate my blood pressure and blood sugar levels.
    One is advised to take complete rest for a day after donating blood.
    Donating blood at frequent intervals make my body iron deficient
    Donating blood causes some infection
    Your body’s immunity level is not affected by blood donation
    No, the blood pressure and blood sugar levels do not fluctuate provided the pre-donation values are within normal limits.
    Can easily resume his or her normal day-to-day routine after donating blood
    A healthy individual with good eating habits can donate blood four times a year with a gap of three months. It doesn’t make anybody iron deficient
    No, there is no fear of infection due to blood donation.

Guidelines for the donors

    Physical Conditions
    The blood donor age between 17 years to 60 years.
    Weight at least 45 kgs.
    Pulse 80 to 100 beats/min and regular.
    The temperature should not exceed 99.5 (37.5c).
    Blood Pressure ranges between 160/90 to 110/60.

What To Do Before Donating Blood

    Drink plenty of water the night and morning before you donate.
    Eat breakfast to help keep your blood sugar up.
    Do not take fatty foods for 24 hours before you donate.
    Take iron content food for two weeks before your appointment like whole grains, eggs etc.
    Ask for a blanket if your hands or feet start to feel cold. This is a sign that your blood
    pressure is dropping. A nice warm blanket might help you to relax.
    Take a deep breath before the needle goes in or pinch yourself to create a distraction.


    Have a snack after the donation.
    What Not Do After Blood Donation
    Avoid sun exposure.
    Avoid driving for the next 2-3 hours.
    Avoid smoking for next 4 hours.
    Eat and Drinks something before leaving
    Drink more liquids than usual in next 4 hours
    Avoid consuming alcohol until you have eaten something
    Avoid climbing steps for next 30 minutes
    If there is bleeding from the phlebotomy site, raise the arm and apply pressure
    If fainting or dizziness occurs, either lie down or sit with the head between the knees
    Resuming all the normal activities if no symptoms occur
    Remove the bandage next day.

Who Should Not Donate Blood

Being positive for the AIDS or hepatitis viruses rules one out as a blood donor.
Individuals who have had ear, tongue, or other body part piercing are allowed to donate blood as long as the needle used in the piercing was sterile. If it was not or if this is unknown, the potential donor must wait 12 months from the time of the piercing. A person with diabetes is allowed to donate blood. Insulin dependent diabetics are allowed to donate blood as long as their insulin syringe, if reused, is used only by them.

One may not donate blood while one has the flu. But one can donate blood after exposure to someone with the flu provided the potential donor feels and has no symptoms. A minimum age limit exists as to how old a person must be in order to donate blood (usually age 18). There is no maximum age limit.
Pregnancy and recent childbirth rule one out as a blood donor. The safety of donating blood during and shortly after pregnancy has not been fully established. There may be medical risks to the mother and baby during this time. Having high or low cholesterol does not exclude a person from donating blood. Potential blood donors may be temporarily prevented from donating if they have a low level of iron (hematocrit) in their blood. This requirement is for the safety of the donor in order to ensure that their blood iron level remains within the normal range for a healthy adult. For almost all cancers (such as breast, brain, prostate, and lung), a person may donate blood five years after diagnosis or the date of the last surgery, last chemotherapy or last radiation treatment. For blood cancers (such as leukemia or lymphoma), a person is not allowed to donate blood. For non-melanoma skin cancer or a localized cancer that has not spread elsewhere, a person may give blood if the tumor has been removed and healing is complete. If a potential donor has had malaria they cannot donate blood for 12 months. This is because the parasite that causes malaria can lay dormant in a person’s system for as long as a year. A person cannot donate blood while they are on antibiotics. This is not because of the antibiotic, but due to the presence of the illness or infection requiring the antibiotic – it may be transmitted through the blood.
Why to register as a volunteer donor on HW

Himachal Watcher provides the volunteer blood donors a common platform where needy people could find a donor of a particular type of blood group, in a particular district of Himachal Pradesh. In case of the emergencies looking for volunteer donors requires instant and fast search for the donors. Therefore, HW wishes to provide the needy with an instant directory containing the details of volunteer donors in any particular district of Himachal Pradesh. Further, the internet is one of the fastest medium of communication that can be accessed even through a mobile almost anywhere in our State. Thus, the main intention is to make it easier to find a donor of the required blood group in a particular locality in the time of emergency requirement.

Promote Blood Donation Among Others, Invite Your Friends

After you register on Himachal Watcher, you can invite your friends to join the cause and help grow the number of donors available to save numerous lives of those who requires a donor urgently.

Facts You Must Know About Blood Donation

    Donating blood is a safe process.
    A sterile needle is used only once for each donor and then discarded.
    Blood donation is a simple four-step process: registration, medical history and mini- physical, donation and refreshments.
    Every blood donor is given a mini-physical, checking the donor’s temperature, blood pressure, pulse and hemoglobin to ensure it is safe for the donor to give blood.
    The actual blood onation typically takes less than 10-12 minutes.
    The entire process, from the time you arrive to the time you leave, takes about an hour and 15 min.
    The average adult has about 10 units of blood in his body. Roughly 1 unit is given during a donation.
    A healthy donor may donate red blood cells every 56 days, or double red cells every 112 days.
    A healthy donor may donate platelets as few as 7 days apart, but a maximum of 24 times a year.
    All donated blood is tested for HIV, hepatitis B and C, syphilis and other infectious diseases before it can be transfused to patients.

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