World Hypertension Day: CMD urges Nigerians above 40 to regularly check BP

Dr Shomade Taofeek, the Chief Medical Director (CMD) of State Hospital, Ota in Ogun State, has advised Nigerians above 40 years to regularly check their blood pressure and control salt intake to avoid hypertension.

He gave the advice in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Tuesday in Ota, in commemoration of the 2022 World Hypertension Day, annually observed across the world on May 17 to raise awareness about the deadly disease.

This year’s theme is “Measure Your Blood Pressure Accurately, Control it, Live Longer”, focusing on combatting low awareness rates worldwide, especially in low to middle income areas, and accurate blood pressure measurement methods.

NAN reports that World Hypertension Day is a day designated and initiated by The World Hypertension League, an umbrella to 85 national hypertension societies and leagues.

Hypertension, also known as high or raised blood pressure, is a condition in which the blood vessels have persistently raised pressure. Blood is carried from the heart to all parts of the body in the vessels and each time the heart beats, it pumps blood into the vessels.

Hypertension is a condition in which the force of the blood against the artery walls is high.

Usually, hypertension is defined as blood pressure above 140/90, and considered severe if the pressure is above 180/120.

High blood pressure often has no symptoms, but if left untreated over time, it can cause health conditions such as heart disease and stroke.

The chief medical director, who said that hypertension is common in developing countries, stressed the need for a healthier diet with less salt, regular exercise and medication to help lower blood pressure.

According to him, hypertension is everybody’s disease as both the poor and the rich suffer from the silent disease.

He advised that “anybody above 40 years should be properly screened for hypertension.

“In addition, people should endeavour to go for regular test and control their salt intake.”

Taofeek said if not properly treated, it could lead to kidney failure and stroke, as well as various forms of heart diseases.

He added that the disease could not be cured but could be controlled, saying “a lot of Nigerians are living with hypertension but they do not know. It is only when you go for check that you will know because most times it has no symptoms; that is why it is called the silent killer.”

He, therefore, urged Nigerians to take hypertension seriously and take their prescribed drugs regularly and go for check up regularly. (NAN)