You may know July for its rainy days but it's also, according to Proclamation No. 1021, National Blood Donors Month. In celebration, we’re dispelling a few myths about blood donation that may be discouraging willing individuals from donating.
Myth #1 Giving blood hurts. You're thinking about the needle, and we don't deny its prick can sting. But the pain will only last for a few seconds, maybe a little discomfort like soreness. There is nothing to be afraid of when it comes to the session itself.
Myth #2 It’s bad for the body. No harm will come to a donor after donation. After each session, donors are advised to rest for more than 10 minutes and refrain from heavy lifting and strenuous activity for the rest of the day. Drinking plenty of liquid is advised to replenish lost fluids. The blood center will also give you snacks after your session.
In fact, donating blood could even benefit the body. According to the Department of Health (DOH), donating blood promotes a healthier heart by lessening blood viscosity, or blood thickness and stickiness. Blood that’s very viscose can damage veins, arteries and other
Myth #3 You can contract an infectious disease like HIV by donating blood. Great care is taken to making sure that sterility is maintained throughout the procedure. To assure you, “each needle used in the procedure is sterile and is disposed after a single use,” says the Philippine Red Cross. Myth #4 People with tattoos can’t donate blood. This is only true to some extent. “As long as the tattooing procedure was done aseptically (in a sterile manner), he/ she may donate blood one year after the procedure. This is the same with ear piercing, acupuncture, and other procedures involving needles,” says the Philippine Red Cross.
Myth #5 People taking medication can’t donate blood. Again, only true to some extent. Many medications are acceptable, but you should call your doctor to make sure you have a go signal.
There will always be a need for blood as it's essential to those with serious illnesses, saving lives in surgery, or to people who have just been in an accident. Now that you’re better informed, you can help. Here’s info you’ll need to start donating blood.
Where to go to donate blood: There are blood donation centers all over the country. In Metro Manila alone are five. Click here for a full list of Philippine Red Cross blood donation centers. What to do before, during and after:
For questions and inquiries, call the Philippine Blood Center at 709-3792, 709-3703 and 0943-314-2873 or Philippine Red Cross at 527-0861.