Osteoporosis is a metabolic disease of bone which leads to a reduction in bone density. The affected bones become thinner, and are more likely to break (fractures) which may result in pain and other complications, including loss of independence.
Osteoporosis produces no symptoms on its own. If osteoporosis-related fracture occurs, there may be localized pain over the fracture sites. Common sites of osteoporotic fracture include thigh bone near the hip joint, spine (vertebrae) and forearm near the wrist. While hip fracture may occur after minor fall, spine can fracture without any trauma. Vertebral fracture can result in a hunched-back and a decrease in body height, and sometimes back pain.
Those who are at risk may consult doctor for a test. The followings are common methods
of measuring bone density.
Adequate calcium and vitamin D intake, together with weight-bearing exercise are essential for normal bone growth. As it is necessary to build strong and healthy bones starting at an early age, everyone should maintain balanced diet and perform regular exercise over a lifetime to avoid osteoporosis later in life.
1. Balanced diet.
2.Don't smoke and don't drink too much. Reduce drinks that contain caffeine such as coffee and tea.
3. Perform weight-bearing exercises, e.g. brisk walking, Tai Chi or gymnastic exercises, at least 3 times a week and for 30-60 minutes each time.
4. Perform outdoor activities to absorb sunlight which will help the body to produce more vitamin D in order to enhance the absorption of calcium. Beware of sunburn.
The above lifestyle tips are also useful to slow down further bone loss in persons diagnosed with osteoporosis. Depending on individual conditions, doctors will prescribe medications for osteoporosis, such as bisphosphate, SERM, calcitonin, teriparatide, strontium ranleate and vitamin D and calcium supplement.
Fall prevention is of paramount importance in preventing fractures and other complications, especially for those who have osteoporosis. Everyone should pay attention to home safety and road safety, wear non-skid footwear, avoid medicines which cause dizziness and wear appropriate corrective eyeglasses.
Bone metabolism is a continuing process and bone loss starts as early as 35-years-old. Hence everyone should take steps to prevent osteoporosis.