A few times a year you might see a familiar red cross posted in your office building. The employee lounge or cafeteria is turned into a makeshift donation center for a day, people are encouraged to give blood. In the last year, with various weather-related disasters contributing to damages and injuries, blood donations are need more than ever before. Whether you are the “universal donor” with O-Negative blood flowing through your veins or you have a less common type, you should consider going to your local donation center and giving a pint.
If you are looking for inspiration or encouragement, here are five reasons which will hopefully motivate you.
1. Blood of all types is high in demand. You might think your blood type is not needed, but it is estimated that forty thousand units are needed daily in the United States alone! This includes A, B and O. If you have blood in your body, donation centers hope you can give a pint every few months.
2. A trauma victim may need as many as 100 units of blood following an accident. When somebody is involved in an accident, he or she can lose a great amount of blood in a short period of time. It is important, therefore, for blood banks and hospitals to have enough on hand to help people in critical condition. Consider, too, that large-scale disasters like earthquakes and hurricanes may require relief on a grander scale.
3. Donating blood is not very painful, and simple and safe to do. Are you afraid of needles? If this is the one thing that has prevented you from giving blood, know that it doesn’t have to be a horrifying experience. Many people who donate may reveal that there is only an initial sting as the needle is inserted into your vein. At most, you may come away with some soreness and light bruising. If you are concerned about HIV, know that organizations take precautions to ensure the safety of blood donors.
4. Regular donation can help keep supplies plentiful in case of emergencies. The more you donate in times when there isn’t really a critical need, the better equipped clinics and hospitals will be when something does happen. Proactive donations help!
5. One donation of blood can save up to three different lives. When you give blood, your donation may be separated into different units allowing more people to benefit.
The next time your office sponsors a blood drive, or if you know of a donation event in your area, consider giving a precious gift that helps others. You may need blood one day yourself, and a donation is a grand blessing.