Before you collect your dried blood spot sample, it is important that you have good circulation and blood flow to your fingertip. Here are some tips that can help you increase blood flow to your finger:
- Stay hydrated! Make sure you drink enough fluids and you are well hydrated before collecting your sample.
- Exercise and get your heart rate pumping. Do some light exercise or swing your arm in a circular motion, windmill-style, to increase blood flow to your finger.
- Make sure your hands are warm. Take a warm shower or warm your hands under warm water for at least two minutes. If your hands are cold, you may find it difficult to collect enough blood.
- Select a correct finger and collection location. Samples are best collected from the middle or ring (3rd or 4th) finger. The best collection spot is between the side and the center of the fingertip. Avoid directly puncturing the center and the tip of your finger.
If you are struggling to collect enough blood to fill the circles completely on the blood card, here are some tips that can help you to increase blood flow during collection:
- Let gravity help you. Stand up and leave the blood card on a flat surface, such as a desk or table. Position yourself so that your heart is above your hands and the blood card.
- Keep your arm straight. Point your arm, hand and finger directly down at the blood card - your goal is to allow your blood to flow "downhill" to your fingertip.
- Gently massage from your hand to your finger. Avoid squeezing the fingertip directly.
- Try again on a new finger. If the blood flow stops, start over using a new lancet on a different finger.