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What is Osteoporosis?
As most people age, they eventually start to lose bone mass and bone mineral density, leading to an overall drop in bone strength and quality. Orthopedic specialists call this phenomenon “Osteoporosis”. While everyone experiences Osteoporosis to some degree as they increase in age, some patients have more severe osteoporosis than others, and have a higher risk for all types of bone fractures.
Osteoporosis does not present any outward symptoms, and most patients will only discover they have osteoporosis after they fracture a bone. Fractures can occur anywhere in the body, but occur most frequently in the hip, spine, and wrist.
Patients can greatly mitigate the progression of osteoporosis by:
- Staying physically active (performing weight bearing exercises and walking regularly).
- Avoiding alcohol consumption.
- Avoiding smoking.
- Taking prescribed medications to slow the progression of osteoporosis.
- Eating a nutrition-rich diet with plenty of calcium and vitamin D.
In advanced cases of osteoporosis, patients may experience bone fractures even from minor falls and normal body movements such as bending and lifting.
Do not confuse Osteoporosis with Osteoarthritis, which occurs due to degradation of joint cartilage.