Have you ever been busy using a knife to prepare a meal. The knife slips, you are cut and you quickly rush to get bandages or clotting powders so that blood clotting can start and you don’t lose much blood ?!! While such external cuts happen only occasionally, do you know that hundreds of tiny, internal tears occur each day and you do not bleed to death. Why? Your Blood has its own natural repair system to control such breaks.
Your Blood has its own natural repair system to control such breaks.
Platelets Plugs On the Frontline
Your blood already contains all the substances needed for its natural repair system. But they are kept inactive until a crisis develops.
When this occurs, pain triggers nervous reflexes that contract the blood vessel. This is a signal for the tiny platelets in the blood to go into action. They rush to the scene of the emergency and attach themselves to the exposed fiber at the tear. Chemical signals from the platelets cause more platelets to converge on the spot, and a loose plug is formed. This begins the process of blood clotting but is usually sufficient for only minor repairs .
Chemical signals from the platelets cause more platelets to converge on the spot, and a loose plug is formed. This begins the process of blood clotting but is usually sufficient for only minor repairs .
Major Repair by Clots
In larger cuts, the natural repair system initiates a stronger, more permanent patch. A platelet plug is still formed, to begin blood clotting to make sure it is covered with a clot. However, forming the clot is a complicated task involving several dozen substances and an intricate sequence of chemical reactions.
Briefly, here is what takes place: In response to the emergency, the blood-vessel walls or the blood clotting factors in the blood release a chemical into the bloodstream. This causes fibrinogen, an inert protein found in blood plasma, to be converted into fibrin. The fibrin molecule is unique in its ability to link together, forming long threads that wrap around the platelet plug.
The threads act much like a spiderweb, catching more platelets, red blood cells, and other substances to form a clot. The newly formed, jellylike clot is about 99 percent water. So two proteins are released by the platelets, causing the clot to contract and squeeze out the fluid. A solid clot has now formed. On the skin surface, where the clot has been exposed to air, it is commonly called a scab (the coloured patch on your wound).
Once begun, this natural repair system stops the blood clotting process so that the clot does not become so big that it blocks the vessel and cuts off blood circulation. How is it stopped? After the repair work is done, blood flow rapidly returns to normal and disperses the clotting factors. There are also several anticoagulants in the blood that prevent excessive clotting and keep platelets from collecting together when there is no emergency.
The Clot is Removed
After the wound is healed, another chemical reaction is triggered to break down the fibrin threads and dissolve the clot. Fragments of the clot that break free in the bloodstream are either cleared by white blood cells or filtered out in the liver, spleen, and bone marrow.
You can Improve Your Natural Repair System
There are certain things that you can do to help the your body’s natural repair system do this intricate job better.
This includes having a healthy life style. Exercise, such as brisk walking and swimming, keeps the blood circulating freely. Also have a balanced feeding schedule. Eating lecithin-rich foods, such as whole-grain breads, and fish high in fatty acid both make platelets less sticky and help you make the blood clotting process effective by reducing formation of abnormal clots. Also, leafy green vegetables, tomatoes, and vegetable oils supplement our vitamin K supply, which helps keep the blood clotting mechanism in good order.