National Blood Donor Month

Featured Author: Contra Costa Living Blog Team

National Blood Donor Month Contra Costa CA

Donate blood in honor of National Blood Donor Month!

January is National Blood Donor Month! Donate this month in honor of the occasion. Donations are vital to saving countless lives. In fact, every donation can save up to three lives! The month is almost over, so make sure to get out and donate.

You can donate either whole blood, plasmas, or platelets. However, be aware that there are limits to how frequently you can donate. You can donate blood (whole blood) every 56 days, platelets every 7 days or up to 24 times per year, and plasma every 28 days or up to 13 times per year.

Before you give blood, make sure that you’re eligible to donate. To meet the minimum requirements, you must be old enough, weigh enough, and be healthy.

  • You must be at least 17 years old to donate. Some states allow 16-year-olds to donate too. If you’re a minor, you’ll need parental consent.
  • You must weigh more than 110lbs.

These eligibility requirements are in place to help keep both you and blood recipients healthy. While these are the basic requirement, there may be other circumstances that prevent you from donating blood. If you’ve gotten a piercing or have traveled abroad lately you should double check. For more information about eligibility requirements, visit the Red Cross.

The actual donation process is easy! But there are a few things to know before you go. Make sure to drink lots of water and iron rich foods the day before you donate. Once you arrive at the blood donation center, you’ll check in and fill out a few forms, so don’t forget your I.D. Then you’ll proceed to a mini-physical just to double check that you’re healthy enough to donate, so make sure to bring a list of any medications your taking. Then you’ll be all set to donate. Be sure to stick around after you give to refuel with lots of snacks and juice.

For more information about blood donations in your community, contact All About Contra Costa, your local community forum.