Osteoporosis can be a devastating condition, especially for women who were only diagnosed after a fracture. Fortunately, with proper treatment and lifestyle changes, you can reduce your risk of disability or major injuries.
Start With Medication
Once osteoporosis occurs, it is not enough to supplement with calcium, you will need prescription medications to help rebuild bone mass and/or reduce the rate of bone loss. Generally, the preferred medications for osteoporosis are in the class of bisphosphonates. These medications reduce the activity of cells, called osteoclasts, that break down bone and reabsorb the material. This slows the overall loss of bone in osteoporosis. Some women experience problems taking bisphosphonates, due to its side effects, and can be transitioned to a weekly or monthly form of the medication. If bisphosphonates are ineffective or not well tolerated, there are other classifications of medicines, depending on specific needs and risk factors, that might be used.
Make Lifestyle Changes
There are several lifestyle factors that can make osteoporosis worse and increase your risk of fractures. A common risk factor is smoking. If you are currently a smoker, speak with your doctor about options to help with quitting. In addition to trying nicotine replacement products, there are newer prescription medications on the market that might be more effective in helping you quit. Your diet remains important when treating osteoporosis. Make sure you are including a well-rounded diet with plenty of vegetables and high-quality sources of protein, whether plant or animal-based. You should also include vitamin D supplements, which can improve calcium absorption. Spending some time outside without sunscreen, just for several minutes each day, is a natural method of increasing your Vitamin D.
Regular physical activity is important for improving bone mass and reducing the risks associated with osteoporosis. If you are relatively healthy, walking for 30 minutes at least five days per week can improve your bone mass. Other activities to consider are yoga or swimming, since these activities are low-impact, and there is less risk of injury. If you have physical limitations, such as gait or balance problems, work with a physical therapist to improve these issues. The combination of osteoporosis and being a fall risk will greatly increase your risk of fractures, especially life-threatening hip fractures. Women concerned about falling are likely experiencing menopause, as well, which adds another element to managing osteoporosis. For postmenopausal osteoporosis information, talk to your doctor. Regardless of your current abilities and health, any activities that improve balance and coordination will reduce your fall risk. Another activity you should consider, if possible, is resistance training. Adding resistance to exercises is one of the most effective ways of increasing lean body mass, including muscle and bone.
Managing osteoporosis requires prescription medication in addition to lifestyle changes. Using multiple approaches to increase bone mass, while decreasing bone loss, will give you the best chance at reducing your risk of fractures.
A few years ago, my father visited a dermatologist for the first time in his life. During this visit, he was diagnosed with several skin cancers. Thankfully, my dad’s dermatologist expertly removed these cancerous spots. If you’ve haven’t visited a dermatologist before, consider doing so sooner rather than later. Many forms of skin cancer are completely treatable if they’re detected early. Besides seeing a dermatologist, you should inspect your skin for any changes regularly. This is especially important if you have numerous moles on your body. On this blog, I hope you will discover ingenious tips to help you protect your health. Enjoy!