Donating blood and saving lives is a great feeling. Every time you decide to give your blood you are making the right choice and you never know, somebody somewhere might just use that blood to get another chance in life. Donating blood is safe and requires nothing. Just visit any donation center near you, donate, and go home happy knowing that whatever you have done will transform people’s lives in the near or long term future. Well, since donating blood is such a great thing to do, perhaps you are wondering how often can you donate blood, after all, if every pint you donate can go a long in saving lives, maybe you should donate as many times as you can right? Well, sadly this is not how it works. The aim of blood donation is to give blood without putting yourself or your health at any risk. In this article, you will get a breakdown of how often you should donate blood and some of the factors to always remember when you are donating.
How Often Can You Donate Blood As A Man Or A Woman?
Blood donation frequency is determined by a lot of things including your gender, age, and current physical state. Traditionally, men can donate blood once every 12 weeks or three months. Women are allowed to donate blood once every 16 weeks due to the menstrual cycles that lead to blood loss each month. However, this is not a schedule that applies to everyone. There could be other prevailing medical circumstances that make the idea of donating blood each three months difficult for you. Talk to your doctor or someone at the donation center to see whether you can donate each three months if you are a man or once each 16 weeks if you are a woman.
Can You Donate Blood After Donating Platelets?
Donating blood often goes hand in hand with plasma and platelet donation. The plasma is also a very important part of blood and it has been used to treat various medical conditions over the years. In light of this, you will realize that how often can you donate blood is a question that goes hand in hand with how long do I need to wait to donate blood if I have juts donated plasma? Well, the good news is that the frequency for donating blood is not affected by plasma or platelet donation. You can donate blood 72 hours after donating plasma or platelets. The same also applies for plasma and platelet donors. If you have donated blood already, you can donate plasma again or platelets after three days.
Why Wait For At Least Three Months Before Donating Blood Again?
Even though the blood donated is replenished in 24 hours after the donation, you are still required to wait three months before you can donate blood again. Well, it is a puzzling question, isn’t it? The reason why you are asked to wait three months is pretty because this is often the time it takes for the body to replenish all blood components. As you know, blood contains four major components. There is the red blood cells, the white blood cells, the platelets and the plasma. The blood plasma replenishes faster compared to the other components. That is why people asking how often can you donate blood will be told that 24 hours will be enough for blood plasma to replenish. However, these other cellular components need at least three months and as such, waiting three weeks is often the best frequency in donating your blood.
How Much Time Do I Need To Donate Blood?
Normally it takes 8-10 minutes to donate blood. However, this is not definite since there are other factors that are involved. To start with, the donor’s health history will determine how long they will need to donate blood. If you have a history of blood pressure conditions you may take longer than others. Diabetic patients also require more time to donate. Other factors may include a large turn out during the blood drive. This means you would have to wait longer before you give blood. In any case, it shouldn’t take more than an hour of your time
What Happens If I Donate Before The Three Months Are Over?
First of all, it is not possible to donate blood before the three months are over. A lot of people who wonder how often can you donate blood know this. During the donation, your information will be keyed into a database. You will also be given a blood donation card that needs to be presented during your second donation. This card will have dates on the last time you donated and the earliest date you are supposed to donate next. This simply means that it is impossible to change the rate of blood donation at any given center. So if hypothetically you were to donate blood before the three-month window elapses, you will be putting yourself at risk. The blood you give needs to be replenished by the body. This ensures that the next time you are donating the blood will be available.; if you donate before three months, there is a risk that you are limiting your body enough supply of blood. This can be quite catastrophic.
Donating blood is a simple yet important life-saving thing that anyone can do. it is important to take time once every three months to donate blood to help save millions of lives around the world.