Giving Blood

We need your help. And by we, I mean everyone. Not just your neighbors. Or your friends at work. I'm talking about people all over the country. Americans like you need your help. 

And you can help them… Without lifting a finger. How, you ask? It's simple.

Your blood. Whoa! Okay, calm down. No, this isn't the start of some cruddy horror movie.

(Sidenote: When was the last time you saw a really scary movie? I can't remember. They are pretty cheesy if you ask me. Of course I am "old," so maybe that's my "problem.")

No. It's World Blood Donor Day. And every year countries around the world, including America, celebrate the day to raise awareness about donating blood. Now, of course you know the benefits of donating blood for those that need it. 

But what about the benefits for those that donate? I never knew this, but there are a ton of benefits to donating blood — both physical and mental.

According to a report by the Mental Health Foundation, helping others can:

  • Reduce stress
  • Improve your emotional well-being
  • Benefit your physical health
  • Help get rid of negative feelings
  • Provide a sense of belonging & reduce isolation

Those are some pretty great emotional benefits. But what about the physical?

Check this out.

Physically donating blood helps you because in order to donate you have to undergo a "free health checkup." They check for things like pulse, blood pressure, body temp, and hemoglobin levels. All stuff that can give great insight into your health.

Not to mention they test your blood for diseases too. There's also a study from 2013 that suggests being a "regular" at the donation center can lower your risk for heart attack. Because the regular blood withdrawals lower the iron in your blood. (However, other studies have shown this isn't the case. Like I say, always do your own research.)

Now remember, just like anything, there may be some side effects. So while donating blood is safe for healthy adults… some folks can feel dizzy or lightheaded (which only lasts a few minutes). And others may bleed or get a bruise where the blood was drawn. 

I've always donated blood because I think it's the right thing to do. It's an easy way for me to help. So why not? But I never thought of all the emotional or physical benefits either. But when I stop to think about it, I always feel better after I donate because I know I did something good.

I hope that encourages you to donate. (Along with all the info I shared above.) You could literally be saving someone's life. And if you're new to blood donating… No fear, because today is the perfect day to start.

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