Osteoporosis – Are You At Risk?

Osteoporosis  Risk Factors

Osteoporosis  Risk Factors

osteoporosis signs and symptoms

 

Due to the rapid drop in estrogen levels during menopause women are at a greater risk of developing osteoporosis.  As estrogen levels decrease calcium and other minerals are depleted at a much faster rate. After menopause a female will lose around 2% of bone every year for several years.

Men also lose bone with age but testosterone levels drop gradually so the males bone mass is adequate for a longer period of time.

 

 

Osteoporosis And Family History

Bone health can be inherited. If you have cases of osteoporosis in your family tree -especially parents or siblings  – or someone in your family have broken bones from minor accidents or lost a lot of height fast (These may be signs of low bone density), then you may be at a higher risk of developing the disease.

 

 

Your Calcium And Vitamin D Levels

Both calcium and vitamin D are critical for good bone health

calcium rdi chart

 

 

Medication And Other Factors

Certain medications and other conditions can affect your bone health

  • Corticosteroids – widely used for asthma, rheumatoid arthritis and many other inflammatory conditions
  • Decreased hormone levels – in women: early menopause; in men: low testosterone
  • Thyroid conditions – over active thyroid or parathyroid
  • Chronic diseases such as chronic liver or kidney disease and rheumatoid arthritis
  • Medications for breast cancer, prostate cancer, epilepsy and some antidepressants can affect your bone health

 

 

Lifestyle Factors

  • Having a sedentary lifestyle (Low activity levels)
  • Smoking
  • Excessive intake of alcohol
  • Your weight – being too thin or having excessive weight

 

If you have any of these risk factors or you are over 50 years old talk to your doctor and if warranted get a bone density scan.