Osteoporosis- This is a pathological condition of the bones in which the bones become extremely fragile and soft that even slightest of stress can result in a fracture. Fractures related to osteoporosis usually occur in the hip, spine, or wrists.
What Is Osteoporosis?
Osteoporosis as stated is a medical condition which makes the bones extremely fragile and soft such that even the slightest of stress like coughing or sneezing can lead to a fracture. Fractures caused due to Osteoporosis are usually seen in the hip, wrist, and spine. The bones in our body are constantly in the process of being absorbed and being replaced by new bone. This is usually done by osteoblasts and osteoclasts present in the bone. Osteoporosis is caused when there is malfunction in either the osteoblasts or the osteoclasts such that there is an imbalance between the formation of the new bone and absorption of the bone making the bones extremely fragile and soft. Menopausal Asian females are at greater risk for developing Osteoporosis.
What Are The Causes Of Osteoporosis?
The peak bone mass is attained by people maximum by the age of 20. With age, the absorption of bone becomes faster than the formation of a new one. Hence development of Osteoporosis is totally dependent on the development of bone during the adolescent and youth period of an individual's life. This means that the higher the peak mass of the bone, the less likelihood of developing Osteoporosis with age.
What Are The Risk Factors For Osteoporosis?
Some Of The Risk Factors For Development Of Osteoporosis Are:
- Sex: females are at a greater risk for developing Osteoporosis.
- Age: The more the age, the greater the risk for developing Osteoporosis
- Race: Asian population is at greater risk for development of Osteoporosis
- Family History: If a family member of an individual has had Osteoporosis then there is a greater chance that the individual will have Osteoporosis
- Body Habitus: Short statured people are at a greater risk of developing Osteoporosis
Apart from the above mentioned risk factors, a low calcium intake can also cause fragile and soft bones as calcium makes the bones healthy. People with eating disorders are also prone to get Osteoporosis. People who lead a sedentary lifestyle and not exercise much are also at increased risk for developing Osteoporosis. Individuals who abuse alcohol and tobacco also tend to have Osteoporosis at a later age.
What Are The Symptoms Of Osteoporosis?
During the initial stages of Osteoporosis, there may be no symptoms felt but once the bones start to get weak the following symptoms may be observed:
- Chronic back pain
- Loss of height with time
- Stooped posture
- Frequent fractures of bones.
How Is Osteoporosis Diagnosed?
Osteoporosis can be easily diagnosed by measuring the bone density of an individual. An individual affected with Osteoporosis will have a low bone density.
What Are Treatments For Osteoporosis?
The readily prescribed medication for treatment of Osteoporosis is bisphosphonates. Some examples of this class of medications are:
The general side effects of bisphosphonates are nausea, pain in the abdomen, swallowing problems.
What Are Some Home Remedies For Osteoporosis?
Some Home Remedies Suggested For Osteoporosis Are:
- Complete smoking cessation and abstinence from alcohol and it reduces the body's ability to absorb calcium adequately
- Prevent Falls: In case if an individual is diagnosed of Osteoporosis then it is imperative for that individual to prevent falls. This can be done by avoiding high heeled shoes, being careful around electrical cords which may be present on the floor, being careful in slippery surfaces or wet weather.
How Can Chronic Osteoporosis Be Prevented?
To prevent development of Osteoporosis, the following steps can be taken:
- Intake of adequate calcium
- Intake of adequate vitamin D
- Regular exercises.