A better way to phrase this question is, “Do blood banks check for THC when donating blood?” Today, we’re going to be addressing this question in detail.
Can I donate blood if I smoke weed – the short answer
If you’re standing in line at a blood drive, about to go on and you don’t have time to read through the entire article…here’s the short answer.
– the long answer
Now that we have established the short answer, let’s take a closer look at what disqualifies you from donating blood.
- Tattoos – Tattoos, for the most part, is okay, however in some places you cannot donate blood if you had a tattoo within the past year. These places (in the US) include; New York, Utah, Georgia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Idaho, Wyoming, Massachusetts, Washington D.C. If you live in these locations you must first wait a year prior to being eligible for blood donation.
- IV Drugs not Prescribed by a Doctor – This is a lifetime ban from donating drugs. If you inject illegal drugs, you are automatically disqualified from donating your blood…anywhere!
- Going to Countries with Malaria – This should be a no-brainer. If you like traveling and just so happen to go to a country where there is a high prevalence of Malaria, you’ll need to wait twelve months prior to being eligible for a blood donation.
- Having Sex with a Man (if you’re a man) – Nope, we’re not making this up. As of 2015, if you have sex with another man…and you’re a man…then you can’t donate blood for an entire year. Before 2015, having gay sex with another man would ban you for life.
As you can see, the list isn’t too extensive. Now, let’s quickly take a closer look at what makes you eligible for donating blood.
Blood donation eligibility
In essence, there are very few requirements to donate blood.
- You must be in good health speaking in general terms
- Must be at least 17 years old to do so without parental permission
- Must weigh over 110 pounds
Can I donate Blood if I Smoke Weed – Red Cross Weighs In
According to the Red Cross, when asked about the consumption of alcohol and tobacco;
The Red Cross doesn’t encourage the use of controlled substances, cannabis or alcohol, however, this doesn’t disqualify someone from donating blood. The person should not have any physical symptoms of impairment in other to be eligible for a blood donation.
This means, as long as you don’t toke up right before you go to donate blood, you should be fine.
Why THC doesn’t disqualify you
According to various studies, THC gets out of your blood within a few hours after smoking it. Of course there are trace amounts present, however, this is not enough to taint the blood. Some of you might be thinking, “But doesn’t THC take a long time to leave your body?”
This is true since THC is lipid-based, it attaches to your fatty cells and can remain in the body for up to 90 days, however, when it comes to your blood it will leave the bloodstream within a few hours.
This means that you don’t have to worry if you have a blood donation coming up and you smoked a few days ago.
What to do the next time you go for a blood donation
Now that you understand the science behind blood donation and the qualifying conditions, let’s talk a bit about what you can do to optimize your blood donating efforts.
- Be Well Rested – The first thing you need to do is be well-rested. It’s the best if you’re in good health. If you aren’t well rested, your blood pressure is reduced and it becomes harder to draw blood. Furthermore, donating blood does bring down your energy levels, thus, if you were out all night and didn’t get much sleep…it might be best to donate blood some other day.
- Eat some food – Don’t eat right before you donate. At least an hour before is okay. Being well fed will increase your stamina allowing you to donate blood without a problem.
- Drink some Water – Hydration is very important. It’s much easier for the medical professionals to tap into your veins if you are well hydrated. You don’t want to be probed by needles while blood experts scramble to find your veins. Simply drink some water beforehand and you’ll be more than fine.
Donating your blood is giving someone else a fighting chance. I consider it has a selfless that is worth extolling especially if you smoke weed. With that being said, I hope by n.ow you have a firm understanding of what you can and cannot do in terms of blood donation.
Please, also see more Marijuana Questions and Answers Here