Lagos State Government has issued a health advisory ahead of the final of the African Cup of Nations between Super Eagles Cote D’ivoire on Sunday.
This health advisory was given in a statement by the Lagos State Commissioner of Health Akin Abayomi, urging residents to prioritise their health and well-being while enjoying football matches and any other intense activities.
Then Nigeria’s side will take on host country Cote D’ivoire in the 2023 AFCON final at Alassane Ouattara Stadium in Abidjan at 8:00 pm Nigerian time.
Reports said former lawmaker Cairo Ojougboh, Cote D’ivoire-based Nigerian businessman Osondu Nwoye, and other fans lost their lives while watching the thriller semi-final match between Nigeria and South Africa on Wednesday.
The Super Eagles mourned the late supporters who died in a during the encounter and offered a minute silence in a team meeting after the match.
The Nigerian Cardiac Society explained that football and other sports are emotional and can induce arrhythmias, heart attacks, and strokes in those with underlying heart conditions.
“The untimely deaths of these Nigerians are a stark reminder that we must be vigilant about our cardiovascular health,” NCS president Augustine Odili, secretary-general Chizindu Aliko and publicity secretary Adeseye Akintunde said in a statement.
NCS pointed out the causes of sudden death include complications of hypertension, heart attack, stroke, heart failure, cardiomyopathies, valvular disorders, pulmonary thromboembolism, aortic aneurysms, status epilepticus, and inherited arrhythmogenic channelopathies.
It stressed that about 50 per cent of all deaths from heart diseases are sudden regardless of the aetiology, that is, the causes or set of causes.
In his advisory, Abayomi called on football and sports enthusiasts to understand their physical limitations and consult with a healthcare professional to identify any underlying health conditions before engaging in activities that could potentially exacerbate them.
The Commissioner admonished that crowded poorly ventilated hot environments should be avoided with attention to good hydration.
“Avoid excessive alcohol consumption, and ensure you drink plenty of water and eat nutritious foods to keep your body fueled and hydrated, especially during prolonged periods of sitting and watching the game.
“Take Regular Breaks: Stand up, stretch, and move around periodically to prevent stiffness and promote circulation. This can also help maintain alertness and prevent fatigue.
“Maintain Good Posture: Sit in a comfortable chair with proper back support and avoid slouching to reduce strain on your muscles and spine”, Abayomi said in the statement.
He ejoined fans to stay calm and relaxed by practising techniques such as deep breathing or mindfulness to manage stress and emotions during intense moments in the game.
Abayomi advised Nigerians to be prepared for emergencies by familiarising themselves with the location of medical facilities and emergency exits at the venue, and know how to access help quickly if needed.
The Commissioner equally called on the residents of Lagos to “contact the Lagos Emergency Medical Team, LASAMBUS, at 767 or 112 toll-free lines in case of a medical emergency.”