Winter is one of the most challenging times of the year to collect enough blood products and donations to meet patient
needs. That’s why National Blood Donor Month is celebrated every January.
This year’s national health observance comes as the nation’s blood supply has dropped to concerning levels and could delay
essential blood and platelet transfusions. Blood donors of all blood types—particularly type O blood—are needed to give
blood or platelets to help meet daily hospital demands.
It’s vital to have plenty of blood banked to meet the demand. Blood is needed for surgeries, traumatic injuries, cancer
treatment, and chronic illnesses. On a daily basis, roughly 29,000 units of red blood cells, 5,000 units of platelets and 6,500
units of plasma are required. Blood and platelets cannot be made synthetically, making voluntary donations necessary.
This month, resolve to be a blood donor and consider the following health benefits of donating blood regularly:
Before you roll up your sleeve and commit to being a regular blood donor, check if you meet the American Red Cross’
requirements to donate blood safely. Additionally, each state has its own requirements for the minimum age to donate. Talk to
your doctor if you have questions.
It may also help to work out with a friend or personal training to help you stay accountable. Before you start working out, visit
your doctor for a checkup and to discuss your desire to incorporate more exercise into your daily routine.
There are so many ways to move your body, so knowing where to start may be
overwhelming. Here are some common types of exercise:
⦁ Aerobic—Any type of cardiovascular conditioning or “cardio” (e.g., running, jump roping and biking)
⦁ Bootcamp—High-intensity circuits combining aerobic and strength exercises
⦁ Flexibility—Stretching to aid in muscle recovery, your range of motion and injury prevention
⦁ High-intensity interval training (HIIT)—Repetitions of short bursts of high- and low-intensity exercises
⦁ Strength training—Weightlifting or resistance training to increase muscular strength and endurance
Taking care of your skin the right way can be difficult. The task can seem almost impossible to achieve when the temperature
and humidity levels drop. Having dry skin may not seem like the most concerning health problem, but not treating dry skin can
result in itchiness, cracked or painful skin, eczema, and dermatitis.
This winter, you should limit how much hot water you expose your skin to as hot water rapidly dries out your skin. Additionally,
you use minimal soap, and you should make sure that the soap you use is gentle on your skin. Finally, you should ensure
you’re properly moisturizing to keep your skin hydrated and healthy.