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Our blood centres are open and you can donate safely.

Read our latest coronavirus update

Feeling faint

Most people adapt quickly to donating blood, however if you feel faint we advise you to:

  • drink plenty of fluids and have a salty snack
  • eat your normal, regular meals
  • avoid hot rooms and hot showers/baths
  • avoid vigorous exercise or rushing about
  • avoid standing for long periods

If you feel unwell:

  • tell someone, either a friend or family member, if possible, and ask them to keep an eye on you
  • lie down and raise your legs if you can.
  • get up slowly when you feel well enough, and drink plenty of fluids

To reduce the chance of you feeling unwell at your next donation:

  • on the day of donation and the evening before, drink plenty of fluids and eat normally, but avoid alcohol. as this will dehydrate you
  • drink the full 500ml of water that you are asked to drink before you give blood - this reduces the chance of fainting
  • ask staff to remind you about the applied muscle tension exercises
  • tell staff about your previous experience of feeling faint or fainting.

Further information

If you are worried or require further information, call our donor helpline on 0300 123 23 23