Osteoporosis Prevention in Alexandria, VA
Osteoporosis is a common disease that occurs when the bones in our body lose minerals faster than they can be replaced, increasing the likelihood that a senior will suffer 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, women have a 50 percent chance of suffering an osteoporosis-related fracture, while men 50 and over have a 25 percent chance.
This risk increases dramatically after the first occurrence!
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 (855) 335-3155 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.
How About Hormone Therapy?
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 :
breast and endometrial cancer
Calcium And Vitamin D: A Winning Combination
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:
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.
While it may be true that a lifetime of proper exercise is ideal, you can still experience benefits no matter when you start! Exercise and physical therapy are often used in combination with osteoporosis medications and other therapies in order to improve bone strength, posture, muscle strength and balance, thereby making falls less likely.
Combining weight-bearing exercises, such as walking, and strength training with weights can help you achieve the best results!
Reduce Fall Risks
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:
Grab bars for showers or bathtubs
Comfort Keepers® Cares!
When you work with Comfort Keepers®, you can be assured that your loved one is receiving the best in home senior care. By using our unique approach called Interactive Caregiving™, our caregivers ensure that the seniors they look after are nourished mentally, physically, and socially in order to help them live happily and independently in their own home.
If you’d like to learn more about our caregivers and how they can help support your loved one’s bone health please, contact us online anytime or call us.