Health is Wealth: Symptoms of Osteoporosis

Terri Spath |

Osteoporosis is a common bone condition that primarily affects older adults, especially women. It  weakens bones and makes them more susceptible to fractures, often referred to as "brittle bones." Here are several signs and risk factors to be aware of.

Symptoms may include:

1. Back Pain: Osteoporosis can lead to vertebral fractures, causing chronic back pain or a hunched posture.

2. Loss of Height: Compression fractures in the spine can result in a gradual loss of height over time.

3. Fractures: Bones become fragile, increasing the risk of fractures, especially in the hip, spine, and wrist. These fractures can occur due to minor injuries or even simple movements like bending over.

Several factors can increase the risk of developing osteoporosis and include:

1. Age and Gender: Women, especially after menopause, and older individuals are at a higher risk.

2. Low Calcium and Vitamin D Intake: A lack of these nutrients can weaken bones.

3. Family History: A family history of osteoporosis increases the risk.

4. Sedentary Lifestyle: Lack of regular physical activity can contribute to bone loss.

5. Smoking and Alcohol: Both can decrease bone density and increase the risk of fractures.

6. Certain Medical Conditions:  Conditions like rheumatoid arthritis and hormonal disorders can increase the risk.

If you suspect you might have osteoporosis or have several risk factors, consider these steps:

1. Consult a Doctor: Reach out to your primary care physician or endocrinologist who can assess your risk factors and recommend appropriate tests.

2. Bone Density Test: Ask for a bone mineral density test (DEXA scan) to measure the strength of your bones. The procedure if quick and delivers results for you to understand within a few days.

3. Nutrition and Exercise: Eat food high in calcium and vitamin D, but add in supplements too. To encourage the best absorption, take supplements along with vitamin C. Weight-bearing exercises like walking, jogging, and resistance training are also believed to improve bone health.

4. Medication: Depending on your risk and test results, you may consider medications to help prevent bone loss or improve bone density. There are some well-known medications as well as cutting-edge approaches that may be available for you..

5. Fall Prevention: Take precautions to prevent falls, such as removing hazards in your home, improving lighting, and using assistive devices if necessary.

As with most health concerns, you need to be proactive. Also, early detection and management are crucial in dealing with osteoporosis. If you're concerned about your bone health, consult an orthopedist or endocrinologist. At Zuma Wealth, we believe that health is wealth.

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