A blood group is the classification of blood into groups A, B, AB, or O based on the presence or absence of specific antigens in the blood and the Rh factor. Type A has the A antigen, Type B has the B antigen, Type AB has both A and B antigen and Type O has neither A nor B antigens.
Identifying Blood Groups At Home
Rh factor refers to the presence of Rh antigens on the surface of the red blood cells. Rh-positive means the presence of Rh antigens on the red blood cells and Rh-negative means the absence of Rh antigens on the red blood cells.
How Is It Classified?
Blood groups are determined based on the presence or absence of specific antigens on the surface of the red blood corpuscles. Along with this the presence or the absence of the protein called the Rh factor creates the 8 most common types of blood groups namely A+, A-, B+, B-, O+, O-, AB+, AB-.
The universal blood donor has O negative blood and the universal plasma donor has AB-type blood.
Importance Of Blood Group
It is very important to know your blood group for safe transfusion and donation of your blood. Antigens are substances present in the blood that can trigger an immune response if certain particles are foreign to the body. Some antigens can trigger the body’s immune system to attack newly transfused blood hence it is very essential to know your blood type to avoid triggering this response.
How To Check Your Blood Group At Home?
Usually, blood types are determined at labs where the doctor or nurse draws your blood to get it tested. It is one of the easiest tests done in a lab. Nowadays you can buy a blood typing kit and do the test at home to determine your blood type.
A rapid blood typing kit requires the user to prick their finger with a lancet provided in the kit. The kit has a card that contains chemicals called reagents. They test for the presence of antigens and Rh factors. Place a drop of blood on the card containing the reagents.
Clumping of the blood occurs when one or more of the antigens or Rh factor is present in the blood sample. If clumping doesn’t occur the person’s blood type is O negative. You can even buy the testing kit online.
If you hate needles and don’t want to draw your blood there are testing kits that determine your blood type without drawing your blood. Saliva can be used as a sample to test for the blood type as antigens are also produced in the saliva. If a person secretes antigens in their saliva then a sample of the said saliva can reliably determine the blood type. But it is important to note that not everyone secretes antigens in their saliva and this method isn’t reliable in indicating the presence or absence of the Rh factor.
Determining blood type by using saliva is available online and is slightly more expensive. Around 80% of people secrete antigens through other bodily fluids like sweat, mucous, and saliva. They are referred to as secretors. Secretors can determine their blood type by bodily fluid test.
Another way for determining your blood type for free is to donate blood. Once you donate your blood you can ask the staff to tell you your blood type. They will respond to you after a few weeks after testing the blood.
At the end of the day, it can be said that blood type is very easy to determine and can be done at a clinic or a hospital, or at home. There are many rapid blood typing kits available online which will tell you your blood type based on the way your blood sample reacts with the card.
If you are one of those who secrete antigens in their bodily fluids like saliva, mucous, and sweat then pricking your finger with a lancet isn’t necessary at all as a sample of your saliva can reliably indicate your blood type. If you want to know your blood type for free then donating your blood is the best option. Also, you will be playing an important role in saving lives by donating your blood.