Why Is Osteoporosis Prevention And Treatment A Big Deal?
Osteoporosis is a common ailment that is characterized by weakened bones and caused when the bones in our body lose minerals faster than they can be replaced. It increases the odds of a senior suffering a debilitating injury from an accidental fall. According to the National Osteoporosis Foundation (NOF), low bone mass and osteoporosis affect 52 million Americans and accounts for two million fractures and $19 billion in related expenses each year.
After the age of 50 men have a 25 percent increased chance of suffering from a fracture, while women over the age of 50 have a whopping 50 percent increased chance!
After the first occurance, this risk increases dramatically!
Due to the high physical and financial cost that osteoporosis presents to senior care, prevention and treatment are top priorities. Here are a few of the leading options:
Give us a call at (585) 209-3728 to learn more!
Medication Can Help!
Most osteoporosis drugs work by blocking the effect of bone destroying cells that increase in number as we get older. One compound, Denosumab, helps prevent the formations of these harmful cells.
Denosumab was shown to be effective in preventing fractures in the two most at risk populations for osteoporosis, postmenopausal women and men in treatment for prostate cancer.
Other osteoporosis drugs belong to a group of drugs called bisphosphonates that behave much like the female hormone estrogen meaning, they inhibit bone breakdown, preserve bone mass, and may even increase bone density in the spine and hips. Examples of these medications include:
Remember to always speak with a physician about the benefits and potential side effects before starting any medication to help determine if it will be safe and effective for you or your loved one.
Is Hormone Therapy A Safe Option?
Due to the availability of other treatment options, estrogen therapy is generally not the first choice for maintaining bone density. Potential serious side effects can include the increased risk of :
- blood clots
- breast and endometrial cancer
- heart disease
Diet Is Key!
Maintaining a healthy diet with plenty of calcium and vitamin D is the easiest way to prevent or treat osteoporosis but, it is important to remember that the amount of calcium our bones need changes as we age.
According to the Institute of Medicine (IOM), it rises from 210 to 270 milligrams a day during the first year of life and peaks at 1,300 milligrams from ages 9 to 18 before declining to 1,000 milligrams from ages 19 to 50 and rising to 1,200 milligrams at age 51 and older. The amount of calcium an individual requires varies, but the IOM recommends limiting total calcium intake to 2,500 milligrams a day.
Natural sources calcium include:
- Dairy products
- Cooked kale
- Soy products
Vitamin D is also essential to bone health due to the way we absorb calcium. Most people get enough vitamin D through exposure to sunlight but, it is also available in fish or egg yolks. If this doesn’t provide enough, vitamin D can also be taken as a supplement as directed by a doctor.
Get Up And Get Moving!
Often, doctors will prescribe physical therapy or an exercise routine in addition to other osteoporosis treatments because of the way they can benefit bodies of all ages. Regularly exercising can help improve both muscle and bone strength, as well as posture and balance, making is less likely you or your loved one will suffer an accidental fall.
If you’d like to take your routine to the next level talk to your doctor about adding weight to your favorite resistance exercises.
Avoid Accidental Falls In The Home
Additionally, you can help reduce the risk of injury by taking steps to make your home, or your loved one’s, safer. Things to check for can include:
- Loose, wooden floorboards or carpeting
- Boxes, newspapers, electrical cords and phone cords in walkways
- Furniture in high traffic areas
Comfort Keepers® Is Here To Help!
When you choose to work with Comfort Keepers®, you’re choosing exceptional in home senior care. One of the ways we guarantee this is by training each of our caregivers in our unique philosophy called Interactive Caregiving™. This means that your loved one’s health will be supported physically, mentally, and socially, in order or ensure their comfort and independence in their own home.
If you’d like to learn more about Comfort Keepers® and our unique approach to in home senior care or if you’d like to schedule your free in home consultation please, contact us online anytime or call us at (585) 209-3728.