Hello lovelies – today I thought I’d talk to you all about donating blood.
This is a bit of a different post from the usual things I talk about. Saying that, I’ve always just talked about whatever I’m doing whether it’s sharing my love for a book or telling you all about moving process. With that in mind, I thought I’d talk to you all about my experience donating blood.
I first began giving blood in 2011, and I remember one of the reasons I decided to give blood was because I had watched a tv show where a baby needed a blood tranfusion – and it was a rare blood type. I began thinking how grateful the family must be to those that donated the blood, and wanted to do my bit to help somebody too. I didn’t know what my blood type was but it didn’t matter whether it was incredibly rare or not, it just mattered that it would help someone.
First thing I did was registered online and booked in an appointment. If you ever decide to donate blood, I highly encourage you do the same – registering and booking an appointment really helps the staff that are running the clinics to run smoothly, and avoids an overflow of walk ins that put the process behind schedule. I remember my first time being nervous, but quickly being reassured by the nurses and feeling at ease.
In terms of the actual donating process, this is what happens: once you’ve booked an appointment at the facility best for you – you will receive a letter with a questionaire at the back. The questions are relating to your health, and include things like asking if you’ve taken and prescription medications etc. When you arrive and hand this to the person managing the schedule, they give you a info booklet to read and ask you to drink a cup of water. Note: it’s best to make sure you’re quite hydrated throughout the day leading to your appointment, it helps with your blood pressure and also finding veins.
You’re taken into a closed off area, and are again asked more questions like ‘could you be pregnant?’ etc, all in order to make sure you’re in the best health and you’re able to donate. Then they’ll prick your finger and take small drop of blood, which they drop into a chemical. When your blood sinks in this chemical, it means that you have a sufficient amount of iron in your blood – and that you can donate.
Then the actual donating process begins. You’re taken to a seat that reclines and the nurses prep your arm for a vein, making sure everything is sanitary and as comfortable for you as they can make it. They basically pop the needle into your vein and you wait for the blood bag to fill. I know that sounds really callous, but I promise it’s not! It’s practically painless, and the entire time I’m giving blood I’m thinking of the help it could be to somebody. Once your bag is ready to go, they’ll clean you up and put a plaster on your arm, with a pressure pad. Once your comfortable moving, they’ll direct you to a refreshments table and offer you a drink and a biscuit. At this point you can arrange another appointment too.
If you’re interested in giving blood, or want to know any information – please check out their website. You can find that here: blood.co.uk. Make sure to register and book an appointment if it’s something you’d like to do. I was thrilled to receive a surprise in the post, a little while after my appointment. The surprise was that they sent me a certificate, and a little badge to thank me for reaching the milestone of 10 donations. Isn’t that lovely?
I’ve always found that it’s an incredibly gratifying experience, and I always feel really good after I’ve donated blood. This trip was my 10th donation, and I’m really happy to have hit double digits. It’s something I intend on doing well into old age (if I can, of course).