" />
close icon

what are you looking for?

close icon

badges you can earn

earn editorial badges by uploading a number of stories.
  • 1
  • 10
    senior writer
  • 20
    sub - editor
  • 50
close icon

Sign Up

use your university email address to create your account.

Username already exists, please use another email address.

Please ensure all fields aren't empty

  • Please Select
  • Abertay University
  • Aberystwyth University
  • Anglia Ruskin University
  • Anglo-European College of Chiropractic
  • Arden University
  • Arts University Bournemouth
  • Ashridge Executive Education
  • Aston University
  • Bangor University
  • Bath Spa University
  • Birkbeck University of London
  • Birmingham City University
  • Bishop Grosseteste University
  • Bournemouth University
  • BPP University
  • British School of Osteopathy
  • Brunel University
  • Bucks New University
  • Canterbury Christ Church University
  • Cardiff Metropolitan University
  • Cardiff University
  • City, University of London
  • Courtauld Institute of Art
  • Coventry University
  • Cranfield University
  • De Montfort University
  • Durham University
  • Edge Hill University
  • Edinburgh Napier University
  • European School of Economics
  • Falmouth University
  • Glasgow Caledonian University
  • Glasgow School of Art
  • Goldsmiths, University of London
  • Guildhall School of Music and Drama
  • Harper Adams University
  • Heriot-Watt University
  • Heythrop College, University of London
  • Imperial College London
  • Keele University
  • King's College London
  • Kingston University
  • Lancaster University
  • Leeds Beckett University
  • Leeds College of Art
  • Leeds Trinity University
  • Liverpool Hope University
  • Liverpool John Moores University
  • London Business School
  • London Metropolitan University
  • London School of Economics and Political Science
  • London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine
  • London South Bank University
  • Loughborough University
  • Manchester Metropolitan University
  • Middlesex University
  • Newcastle University
  • Newman University, Birmingham
  • Northumbria University
  • Norwich University of the Arts
  • Nottingham Trent University
  • Oxford Brookes University
  • Plymouth College of Art
  • Plymouth Marjon University
  • Plymouth University
  • Queen Margaret University
  • Queen Mary University of London
  • Queen's University Belfast
  • Regent's University London
  • Robert Gordon University
  • Rose Bruford College
  • Royal Academy of Music
  • Royal Agricultural University
  • Royal Central School of Speech and Drama
  • Royal College of Art
  • Royal College of Music
  • Royal Conservatoire of Scotland
  • Royal Holloway, University of London
  • Royal Northern College of Music
  • Royal Veterinary College
  • School of Advanced Study
  • Scotland's Rural College
  • Sheffield Hallam University
  • SOAS, University of London
  • Southampton Solent University
  • St George's, University of London
  • St Mary's University, Twickenham
  • Staffordshire University
  • Swansea University
  • Teesside University
  • The American International University in London
  • The London Institute of Banking & Finance
  • The Open University
  • The University of Law
  • Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance
  • Ulster University
  • University College Birmingham
  • University College London
  • University College of Estate Management
  • University for the Creative Arts
  • University of Aberdeen
  • University of Bath
  • University of Bedfordshire
  • University of Birmingham
  • University of Bolton
  • University of Bradford
  • University of Brighton
  • University of Bristol
  • University of Buckingham
  • University of Cambridge
  • University of Central Lancashire
  • University of Chester
  • University of Chichester
  • University of Cumbria
  • University of Derby
  • University of Dundee
  • University of East Anglia
  • University of East London
  • University of Edinburgh
  • University of Essex
  • University of Exeter
  • University of Glasgow
  • University of Gloucestershire
  • University of Greenwich
  • University of Hertfordshire
  • University of Huddersfield
  • University of Hull
  • University of Kent
  • University of Leeds
  • University of Leicester
  • University of Lincoln
  • University of Liverpool
  • University of London
  • University of Manchester
  • University of Northampton
  • University of Nottingham
  • University of Oxford
  • University of Portsmouth
  • University of Reading
  • University of Roehampton
  • University of Salford
  • University of Sheffield
  • University of South Wales
  • University of Southampton
  • University of St Andrews
  • University of Stirling
  • University of Strathclyde
  • University of Suffolk
  • University of Sunderland
  • University of Surrey
  • University of Sussex
  • University of the Arts
  • University of the Highlands and Islands
  • University of the West of England
  • University of the West of Scotland
  • University of Wales
  • University of Wales Trinity Saint David
  • University of Warwick
  • University of West London
  • University of Westminster
  • University of Winchester
  • University of Wolverhampton
  • University of Worcester
  • University of York
  • Wrexham Glyndwr University
  • Writtle University College
  • York St John University

By creating an account you agree to the uni news Terms and Conditions, and agree to receive marketing communications.

close icon

subscribe to uni news

get the latest articles straight to your inbox.

Donating blood: it's not as scary as you think

Donating blood is something that everyone should do at least once.

400 new donors a day are needed to meet their demand, and from personal experience, it really isn't as scary as you think. Here, we will go over the process of donating blood, myths and concerns to put your mind at rest:

Many students will not even think to donate because no one is talking about it and it is an unnerving thought, especially if you don't like needles. But the nurses, accommodating and kind, are there to guide you through the life-saving process of donating blood.

What happens when you give blood?

You will initially be screened for health issues—which involves a questionnaire and a quick sample of blood taken by a pin-prick from your finger. After this, it's time to give blood. You lie down on a reclining chair and you are allowed to listen to music through the process. The worst part is when the needle goes in your arm, but you can barely feel it. The tiny pinch of pain is nothing compared to the rewarding feeling of helping someone recover from an injury or life-threatening illness. There is food and drink available all the time, including squash and water, and sugary foods to keep your blood sugar levels up.

What happens after you've given blood?

Afterwards, the nurse will take you to the snack table to take a break before you can go. It's very normal to feel dizzy at this stage, but it goes away quickly. You are recommended to abstain from heavy exercise and drink lots of water for the rest of the day.

Can they take too much blood?

One thing that I was scared about when I first gave blood was that they would forget about me and drain too much blood. However, there is a timer hooked up to you and it immediately cuts off when they have taken enough blood from your arm, making it virtually impossible for this to happen.

Does it hurt?

Another is that the experience is very painful. The worst pain you will experience is the prick of a needle and a bit of soreness after, but this is absolutely tolerable and much less painful than stubbing your toe.

Does giving blood affect your health?

I also had the idea that my health would somehow deteriorate after donating blood. It was something to do with the amount of blood loss that I thought could not be healthy for me. The truth of the matter is, there are no detrimental effects on your health. If you are healthy enough to give blood, you can easily form new blood afterwards and you will be absolutely fine.

Can you give blood if you're on your period?

Some girls think that giving blood will affect their periods somehow, however, this is not the case. The blood that you lose during your period is not affected by the blood you donate and so there will be no effect here. Your period will not lighten or get heavier after donating blood, nor will it be brought on earlier or delayed.

On that note, girls can think they can't donate on their period. You definitely can do and there is no restriction against it, but if on the day you are experiencing an especially heavy or nasty period, it may be best for you to reschedule out of personal comfort.

Can you donate blood if you drink or smoke?

You also can donate blood if you smoke, drink and have tattoos and piercings, as long as the tattoos and piercings were done over four months ago.

The only main reasons that you absolutely cannot donate blood permanently is if you have HIV/AIDs, Hepatitis B, Syphilis or if you have been injected with drugs, even if it was one time or a long time ago.

Donating blood is a rewarding experience that can save up to three lives in one session. To read more about the donation process or to sign up, click here.