World Osteoporosis Day 2022: Risk factors and diagnosis

Contributed by: Anjali Sharma

Introduction

Osteoporosis literally means ‘porous bones’. Because this condition weakens the bones, it increases your chance of sudden, unexpected fractures. If you have osteoporosis, your bones are weak and have less mass.

The condition often progresses without warning signs or discomfort, and is usually not recognized until the weakening of the bone results in a painful fracture. Most of them include hip, wrist and spine fractures.

Read more about osteoporosis risk factors, diagnosis and treatment.

What are the symptoms of osteoporosis?

Osteoporosis usually shows no symptoms. For this reason it is sometimes referred to as a silent illness. However, look for the following:

  • Loss of height (shortening of an inch or more)
  • Postural adaptations (slouching or bending forward)
  • Shortness of breath (low lung capacity due to compressed disc)
  • broken bones
  • Lower back pain

Who is at risk of osteoporosis?

Two of the most important risk factors for osteoporosis are gender and age, which together account for a wide range of risk variables.

age

Age increases everyone’s risk for osteoporosis fractures. However, the risk of developing osteoporosis is highest in postmenopausal women over the age of 50. Because menopause inhibits the production of estrogen, a hormone that prevents excessive bone loss, women’s bone loss accelerates in the first 10 years after menopause.

weight

Bone structure and body weight are other factors. Skinny people have more body weight and less bone loss than people with larger frames, so they are more likely to develop osteoporosis.

family history

Risk factors for osteoporosis may include family history. Your risk of developing osteoporosis may be higher if your parents or grandparents had any symptoms of the condition, such as a hip fracture after a minor fall.

Medical problems

Last but not least, certain medical problems and medications increase your risk. You and your healthcare provider may want to consider early osteoporosis screening if you currently have or have had any of the conditions listed below, some of which are linked to abnormal hormone levels.

  • An overactive thyroid, parathyroid or adrenal gland.
  • History of bariatric (weight loss) surgery or organ transplantation.
  • Celiac disease, or inflammatory bowel disease.
  • Blood diseases such as multiple myeloma.
  • Hormone treatment for breast or prostate cancer or a history of missed periods.

How is osteoporosis diagnosed?

To learn about your bone health before problems arise, your doctor may conduct a test. Dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry, often called a Dexa or DXA scan, is another name for a bone mineral density (BMD) test.

Bone strength in the spine, hips, and wrists can be tested using these X-rays, which emit very small amounts of radiation. Only very advanced osteoporosis will show up on routine X-rays.

A Bone density test Should be performed on all women over 65 years of age. For women with risk factors for osteoporosis, the DEXA scan may be done early. Consider getting a bone density test if you’re over 70 or younger but have risk factors.

Avoid foods if you have osteoporosis

alcohol

Bone health can be negatively affected by alcohol.

According to the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMSD), alcohol negatively affects the body’s ability to absorb calcium and vitamin D. Chronic heavy drinking can also lead to hormonal changes that affect bone development and breakdown.

As a result, people with osteoporosis may want to consider reducing their alcohol consumption.

Soda and cold drinks

Cola consumption is associated with decreased bone mass. Although the displacement of high-calcium dairy drinks may be the main problem, there may also be a direct effect. Cola is usually high in caffeine and excessive consumption can significantly increase the risk of bone loss.

Sodium-packed foods

Because of increased calcium excretion, a high-salt diet can exacerbate osteoporosis. So, if you want to maintain a high level of bone mass, be sure to reduce your salt intake.

Additionally, exercise and physical activity support bone health throughout a person’s life. Weight-bearing workouts improve bone strength and remodeling.

Last thought

Every year October 20 is recognized worldwide as World Osteoporosis Day. To spread awareness among people about this medical illness, this day is observed.

In this article, we have covered different aspects of osteoporosis that will provide you with risk factors, diagnosis and foods to avoid if you have osteoporosis.

Talk to your doctor if you have osteoporosis. Test every possible treatment and lifestyle change. Together, you can decide on a treatment plan that is best for you.

Book a bone strength test today!

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