Many people don’t like the sight of blood and hate the idea of a nurse with a needle. But the truth is, none of us can live without blood. For many people, just having blood isn’t enough; they need healthy blood that can do the job it is supposed to do.
Who needs to receive blood?
A healthy woman has about 10 pints of blood in her body. A healthy man has about 12 pints. If anything happens to remove some of your blood, it needs to be replaced. Blood is manufactured in the body by the bone marrow. If a small amount of blood is lost or removed for donation, the body is able to replace that blood in a fairly short amount of time. But if you have surgery or are in a serious accident and lose a lot of blood, doctors will need to help your body recover by replacing the lost blood.
The body needs to have the correct amount of blood to make sure all its systems work correctly. If you have too little blood, your body won’t receive all the oxygen it needs and you may become dizzy or pass out. Some people also have diseases such as sickle cell that cause the blood to not work the way it is supposed to. When this happens, they may need transfusions of healthy blood for the rest of their lives.
Facts about blood donation
• Someone needs blood every two seconds in the U.S.
• More than 38,000 blood donations are needed every day to keep up with the demand for blood.
• One person who is seriously hurt in a car accident can use up to 100 pints of blood.
• One donation of blood can help up to three different people.
• If you are going to have surgery, you can donate your own blood before the surgery for your own use.
• If someone you know is going to have surgery, you can direct your blood to be given to that person.
• Blood donated in the U.S. can help in emergencies around the world.
Donating is easy
It is safe and easy to donate your blood. You can schedule an appointment in advance and the entire process takes just over an hour of your time. All equipment used to draw your blood is new and has been sterilized to protect your health. About half of all donors are male and half are female.