Osteoporosis: What it is, Facts, Risk Factors
Men and women are both affected by osteoporosis or degenerative arthritis. This disease is characterized by low bone mass and a deterioration of bone tissue leading to frail, brittle bones that increases the risk of fractures in the hip, spine and wrist. This disease can be prevented and treated.
Osteoporosis is not age dependent and can develop at any age
On average, 44 million Americans are at risk, 68% are women
More than 2 million American men suffer from osteoporosis while millions more are at risk
Approximately 10 million of Americans currently have osteoporosis
About 34 million American have low bone mass, increasing their risk for developing osteoporosis
1 out of every 2 women and 1 out of every 4 men will have a fracture or break related to osteoporosis
Each year, about 80,000 men have hip fractures, a third of which are fatal within a year
Throughout our lives old bone is removed and new bone is generated to our skeleton. During childhood and adolescence, this process of regeneration is much quicker. This also causes bones to become larger, heavier and denser. Until about the age of 30, the average person produces new bone faster than the old bone is removed. After this time, the process begins to reverse. Osteoporosis will most likely develop when old bone is removed faster than new bone can be generated. Generally, bone loss is faster in women the first few years after menopause and continues gradually for years after menopause has ended.
Gender: As a women, your chances of developing osteoporosis are much higher especially due to menopause
Age: With the peak bone mass being at 30 years of age, the older you get, the greater the chances of developing osteoporosis
Ethnicity: Statistics show that while Caucasian and Asian women are at the highest risk, African American and Hispanic women also have a significant risk, even if slightly lower
Family History: Heredity and genes play a part
Hormones: abnormal absence of menstrual periods and low estrogen/testosterone levels can bring on osteoporosis
Anorexia: this eating disorder increases the risk of osteoporosis
Medications: long term use of certain medications can lead to loss of bone density and fractures
Lack of Calcium and Vitamin D: a diet low in these can lead to bone density and fractures
Cigarettes and Alcohol: not only are these bad for your heart, lungs and liver but they are bad for bones and can increase the risk of bone loss and fractures
Lifestyle: a very inactive lifestyle or extended bed rest tends to weaken bones
For more information on treatment, prevention and help please feel free to contact us. Our CSA’s are available to help guide you and find you or your loved one the best care.