In any given year, there are around 118.5 million blood donations across the globe. Many of these donations happen in more affluent nations, such as the UK or the US.
Of course, blood donations are voluntary and the number of people who engage in blood donation waxes and wanes over time. For example, in recent years, the Covid pandemic and its fallout drove down the number of donors in the UK.
If you’re on the fence about donating blood, though, keep reading for a quick overview of several benefits of donating blood regularly.
It Literally Saves Lives
A common refrain about donating blood is that it saves lives. It might sound a little hyperbolic, but it’s true. At any given time, the UK has a stock of blood available that medical facilities can use for things like surgeries.
Recently, that stock of blood has dropped to a level that the National Health Service considers critical. It’s bad enough that the NHS has asked that hospitals limit their use of blood, which often delays important but not lifesaving surgeries.
While one donation might not seem like much, it’s a step toward correcting that blood shortfall.
You Get a Health Checkup
No, you don’t get a full-blown physical when you go to donate blood, but you do get a quick once-over. Before you can donate, the donation center needs assurance that you’re healthy enough to make the donation.
That typically means a check on basics like your blood pressure. They’ll typically screen you for a number of infectious diseases. If they find something, it can alert you to visit a doctor sooner than later.
Reduces Certain Health Risks
Believe it or not, donating blood can actually reduce your odds of getting certain conditions. It helps reduce the risk of high blood pressure. It also helps reduce the odds of a heart attack.
It can also help cut down on your chances of developing nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. As an added bonus, donating blood often can also serve as a mental health boost. You can improve your overall sense of well-being and limit your odds of depression.
Support the Medical Industry
While many people don’t think about it, the medical industry supports a wide range of jobs. Donating blood more often means that donation centers must shop for blood collection needles more often. That, in turn, supports the employees at the medical supply manufacturer.
Donating Blood and You
Donating blood is a regular activity for some people, but many people go their entire life without donating once. If you fall into that camp, you should give it some thought.
Donating blood literally does help other people survive their surgeries. It also comes with other benefits, such as getting a quick health checkup every time you donate.
Beyond that, you enjoy a reduced risk of conditions like high blood pressure and heart attack. You also get the mental health benefits.