Bone Health

What Is Osteoporosis?

Aging is normal; losing bone strength doesn’t have to be. Osteoporosis is a disease that can leave your bones thin, brittle and more likely to break. Working with your health professional and learning preventive care can help offset or slow down osteoporosis.

The bones mostly likely to be affected by osteoporosis are the hips, wrists and spine. Symptoms can include pain in your bones and muscles, especially your back.

How Can I Keep My Bones Healthy?

Keep your bones as healthy as possible with these recommendations:

  • Get the amount of calcium and vitamin D your provider recommends.
  • Get regular exercise, especially weight-bearing exercise such as walking and dancing.
  • Avoid smoking.
  • Drink alcohol in moderation only.

Am I at Risk for Osteoporosis?

Osteoporosis affects women 4 times more than men. Other risk factors include:

  • Aging – bones weaken and lose density with age
  • Race – white and Asian women are at highest risk
  • Weight – people with lower weight and less muscle are at higher risk
  • Lifestyle factors, including smoking, caffeine use, lack of activity, excessive alcohol use, lack of calcium and vitamin D in your diet
  • Use of certain medications
  • Family history of bone disease

What Treatment Do I Need for Osteoporosis?

If you’re diagnosed with osteoporosis through bone density testing, your doctor may advise the following treatments:

  • Prescription medication
  • Supplements of calcium and vitamin D
  • Improved nutrition
  • Exercise to improve your physical fitness and prevent falls
  • Proper weight management

Talk to your Banner Health provider about the bone health care that’s right for you.

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