This year’s flu season has brought a great deal of concern and misfortune to Texas and shows no signs of slowing down yet. More recently, local blood banks in the Big Country have reported that the flu and other related illnesses have reduced the amount of donors coming in to give blood. The shortage has caused local blood banks to not have enough blood to sustain those in need.
What you can do to help:
If you are able to, give blood! Donating will greatly help our local blood banks during this harsh flu season. Below are a few tips to consider before and after donating blood to help improve your blood donation process.
Before donating blood:
Get a good night’s sleep
Maintaining a healthy iron level by eating meals high in iron (fish, poultry, spinach, beans, red meats, etc)
Drink plenty of water or nonalcoholic fluids before donating
After donating blood:
Drink plenty of fluids and avoid alcohol for the next 24 hours
Do not do any heavy lifting or intense exercise for the rest of the day
If you experience dizziness or light-headedness after donation, sit or lie down until you feel better. Avoid performing any activity where fainting may lead to injury for at least 24 hours
Eat a light snack after donation
Where you can donate:
There are a few places in Eastland County and the Big Country where you can donate. To find the closest place to you, go to www.toblooddonationdirectory.org.
Garner, Erica. Big Country Homepage.com Website. Flu Causing Low Blood Supply at Abilene’s Meek Blood Center. http://www.bigcountryhomepage.com/news/main-news/ flu-causing-low-blood-supply-at-abilenes-meek-blood-center/971709805. Accessed February 15, 2018.
American Red Cross website. https://www.redcrossblood.org/learn-about-blood /iron-and-blood-donation. Accessed February 15, 2018.