Bone Density Risk Factors and Prevention

Osteoporosis is a disease that can affect all bones in the body, making them weak. The inside of a healthy bone has small spaces, like a honeycomb. Osteoporosis increases the size of these spaces, causing the bone to lose strength and density. Thus, the outside of the bone grows weaker and thinner. Osteoporosis can occur in people of any age, but it is more common in older adults, especially women.

Controllable Risk Factors
• Smoking
• Alcohol use
• Lack of exercise

Uncontrollable Risk Factors
• Aging
• Menopause
• Family history

The early stages of osteoporosis have no warning signs or symptoms. In a majority of the cases, a person suffering from osteoporosis doesn’t know that he or she has the condition until he or she has a fracture.
However, a few signs that might appear are
• Receding gums.
• Weakened grip strength.
• Weak and brittle nails.

There are a number of ways to preserve bone density—and even increase it—by taking control of the risk factors. Some of the proven measures are:
• Diet—Add nutrients like vitamin K and vitamin D by eating plenty of fruits and vegetables. Make sure that there is enough calcium in the body.
• Exercise—It can help you regain bone by building muscle. Walking, swimming, biking and yoga are great forms of exercise to build muscle.
• Visit your primary care provider for regular check-ups—If you are at risk of developing osteoporosis, talk to your doctor about the best way to prevent it. Even if you don’t have symptoms but have a family history of osteoporosis, regularly visiting the doctor can help you assess your risk.

If you would like to make an appointment with our bone health specialist, please call (513) 475-UC4U.

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