Donating blood is one of the most powerful and influential things that you can do to help the community and those around you. Each year throughout the United States millions of people need blood, and sometimes the type of blood needed is not available. If more people donated, there would be greater, more diverse stores capable of helping more people when needed, and being prepared in the event of an emergency. Donating blood with your elderly parent is a wonderful way to help them feel more involved in their community and as though they are making a difference to others.
If you or your aging parent has never donated blood before, you may be nervous. Knowing what to expect and going over it with your parent can help both of you feel more confident and prepared to go in and donate, and to make this a regular part of your care routine together.
Your donation process starts before you even go into the donation center. Review the eligibility requirements and make sure that you and your senior are both eligible. Despite common misconceptions, there is no such thing as “too old” to donate and even people with some health issues such as high blood pressure, are still eligible to donate. If you are concerned, talk to your parent’s doctor about their desire to donate and make sure that it is a safe and healthy thing for them to do.
Once you arrive at the donation site, you will register. During this time you will answer questions about donation and provide your name and other information. You will then have a private interview during which you can discuss health issues, health history, where you have traveled recently, and other issues. After this, you will undergo a mini-physical to check your vital signs and other acute health signs. Once you have been approved through this step, it is time for the actual donation.
The donation itself is very quick. The technician will clean the area and use a new, sterile needle. Over the course of approximately 8 to 10 minutes, one pint of blood will be collected. Your arm will then receive a bandage. After the donation you should have something to drink and a snack that will be provided for you while you rest. This helps your body build back up. After approximately 10 to 15 minutes you are free to go and can go about your normal daily activities. Be sure to alert someone if you or your parent feels lightheaded or in any way strange after donation.
Being a family caregiver for an elderly adult can be very stressful and make you feel as though you are constantly trying to finish a to-do list that won’t stop growing. If you are feeling overwhelmed, as though you are not giving your aging parent the care that they deserve, like you have limitations that keep you from fulfilling care tasks in the appropriate way, or that your parent would simply benefit from additional care and support, home care can help. You do not have to do it all when you agree to be your parent’s caregiver. Being a caregiver means taking the steps to give your loved one what they need to manage their needs and make the most of their later years, and starting home care for them can accomplish this. This care provider can step in to fill care gaps, offer companionship, and enrich your parent’s life while ensuring that you continue to support and care for them in all of the ways that are right for both of you.
If you or an aging loved one are considering caregiver services in Matawan, NJ, please contact the caring staff at Lares Home Care 888-492-3538 or 732-566-1112.