Blood tests are a diagnostic tool that doctors can use to check on a patient's health. Your blood can tell a lot about you. It can let your doctor know about any nutrients you're missing. It can also contain markers for diseases that are difficult to diagnose in any other way.

Some doctors test their patients' blood in-office, but many other doctors send patients to blood test labs for sample collection. Preparing yourself for your blood test can ensure that you have a smooth and easy experience. Here are three things you can do to get ready for your visit to a blood test lab:

1. Eat a snack or small meal before your blood test.

In some cases, it's necessary to fast before a blood test so your doctor can obtain the right information from the sample. However, in many other cases, fasting is unnecessary. If you haven't been asked to fast before your blood test, it's a good idea to eat a snack or a small meal at least an hour before the procedure. Having food in your stomach can help you feel less weak due to blood loss following your appointment. You may also want to take a snack with you to replenish your blood sugar immediately after your blood test.

2. Consider choosing your non-dominant arm for your blood draw.

Blood is typically drawn from a vein on a patient's arm. In most cases, your phlebotomist will use one of the large veins located on the inside of your elbow. However, in some cases, a vein on your hand or wrist may be chosen instead. You can choose which arm you'd like to have blood drawn from at the time of your appointment. In many cases, choosing your non-dominant arm is wise since you may have some residual soreness after the procedure. Picking the arm that you use less intensively will allow you to avoid discomfort after your blood draw procedure.

3. Focus on something besides the needle during your blood draw.

Some people avoid blood tests because they are squeamish about needles. However, it's important to complete all the tests your doctor requests. A blood test can be less uncomfortable if you focus on something besides the needle. Looking away from your arm and focusing on other things and make the experience more pleasant. You may even want to try chatting with the phlebotomist who draws your blood to further distract yourself.