If you’ve ever suffered from multiple bone fractures or a loss of bone density, you could have osteoporosis. When viewed microscopically, you’ll see that bone looks similar to a honeycomb. When you experience osteoporosis, your bones will look like a honeycomb with holes and spaces in it, which are much bigger than healthy bone.
Osteoporotic bones comprise lost mass or density and have irregular tissue structures. Your bones will become less dense, causing them to weaken and possibly break.
But, who is at risk? What can get done to prevent this disease, and how can we reduce its effects? Read further to learn about all the essential facts of osteoporosis.
1.Osteoporosis weakens bones
Osteoporosis is a disease that affects bones severely and can leave you with permanent health effects. Bones become weak, porous, and brittle, making them more likely to break.
2.Millions of people are at risk
Millions of Americans get affected by osteoporosis. U.S. health officials have stated that due to low bone mass, the disease can affect about 40 million people. Low bone mass means your bones are thin and weak.
Developing osteoporosis increases with age. A condition called osteopenia affects nearly 12 million men and 23 million women over 50 years old. Osteopenia means that people have weaker bones that are not weak enough to be classified as osteoporosis, although it can still progress to osteoporosis.
3.Osteoporosis affects both men and women.
Although osteoporosis is more common in women than in men, men are still at risk. Men make up about 20% of affected Americans that have osteoporosis or osteopenia.
Women are at higher risk due to having fewer estrogen hormones after menopause. Women also have bones that thin quicker than men, while having smaller bones, too.
4.Age is not the only risk factor.
Nothing can get done about aging risk factors, including family history and ethnic backgrounds. People who have the highest risks are of caucasian and Asian backgrounds. Your body size (not weight) and bone size can’t get controlled either.
Although there are many more factors making osteoporosis likely, you can still do something about them. Examples of what can get done include the following:
Drink less alcohol and quit smoking
Eat healthier, especially foods high in Vitamin D and Calcium, which are good for your bones
Exercise to strengthen your bones
Check with your specialist to find out if any of your medication is affecting your bone health
5.Osteoporosis can be hard to detect.
Osteoporosis can get seen as a silent disease, as you don’t notice it developing. Until a bone breaks, you won’t know your bones have weakened. However, a painless screening test can get used by your doctor to determine if you have the disease before it worsens. The test is like an x-ray with less radiation exposure and measures bone mineral density (BMD). This test is often done during an annual check-up or more often if you’re at a higher risk.
6.Osteoporosis cannot be cured.
Even though lost bone mass cannot get replaced, you can still protect your remaining bones. Future problems like broken bones can get prevented by following your doctor’s plan. Ensure that you drink supplements and eat foods rich in calcium and vitamin D.
Consider including weight-bearing workouts in your daily routine to work bones and muscles against gravity. Examples of these workouts include climbing stairs, walking, and lifting weights. To prevent yourself from falling, remove rugs, light up walkways, and install grab bars in your bathroom.
7.Medication might be an option.
Preventing broken bones is the primary goal of osteoporosis treatment. Some drugs can prevent weak bones from getting more fragile and brittle. Bisphosphonates are prescribed often by doctors, which are known to slow down the weakening of bones. This medication comes as a pill to take weekly or monthly, or it can get infused by putting the drug directly into your veins. The infusion process can get done every few months or annually. Please consult with your doctor to find which medication is right for you in treating your bones and keeping them healthy.
Although there is no remedy for osteoporosis, you can lessen its effects on your life. Start with a daily exercise routine, improve your food quality, and make sure to include the proper supplementation to increase your vitamin intake.
If your body gets consumed by pain, speak to your health care provider to prescribe medication to ease any pain and discomfort.
Remember that you can live a relatively normal life if you take care of yourself and your body!