Eat well, try to always include iron-rich foods in your diet. These foods include: beef, pork, poultry (chicken, turkey), fish, lamb, clams, oysters, nuts, raisins, peas, spinach and other dark, leafy greens.
Get a good night's sleep.
Drink plenty of fluids.
Drinking water 30 minutes before giving blood has been found to improve the donation experience. Drinking fluids helps maintain good circulation throughout your body, and helps prevent light-headedness.
When you arrive, using a computer touch screen you will complete a series of donor questions, including your name, address, phone number, etc. You will be asked a few questions about your health.
RECEIVE A MINI PHYSICAL
Next, you will receive a mini-physical to ensure that you are healthy enough to donate blood. This includes checking your temperature, blood pressure, pulse and iron level.
You will be asked to recline in a donor chair. One of OBI's phlebotomists will prepare your arm, sanitizing it and asking you to squeeze your fist to increase blood circulation. Because sterile, disposable, one-use-only supplies are used for your donation, there is no risk of getting a disease from giving blood. The blood collection will be started and typically lasts about 20 minutes to donate one unit (about a pint).
One way to prevent feeling light-headed or dizzy during blood donation is to do Applied Muscle Tension (AMT) exercises. These muscle-tensing exercises are done by "dividing" your body by major muscle group regions while silently counting to five. Then, release and relax the same muscles and count to five. When you complete one cycle, select another muscle region, and repeat the tightening and relaxing exercise.
AFTER YOUR DONATION
juice and cookies
We encourage you to relax in our refreshment area and enjoy some juice and cookies to replenish your body before you take on the rest of your day. Refrain from heavy lifting or strenuous physical work for 24 hours. Listen to your body's signals during the next day. Have a seat. slow down and rest if you find yourself feeling unusual. Should you have any medical concerns or questions, call OBI day or night at the phone number that will be listed on the card you receive at the end of your donation.
The best part is how you'll feel, knowing you have made a lifesaving difference for someone in need.