Understanding the common symptoms and treatment options for osteoporosis
Osteoporosis is a common bone disease that affects people after a certain age with symptoms that include thinning and weakening of the bone structure. Commonly affected areas include the hips, spine, and wrist caused due to low bone mass density. The risk of developing osteoporosis is higher when the bone mass density is affected which is why early treatment and diagnosis of osteoporosis is recommended as soon as the first signs and symptoms indicate bone trouble.
Symptoms of osteoporosis
For effective treatment and diagnosis of osteoporosis, it is necessary to understand the common symptoms that indicate weak bones. This is easier said than done since there is no way of properly telling whether you have a good bone density or not.
Only a bone mineral density test can accurately estimate the thickness and overall health of your bones. However, a bone mineral density test is not one of the common medical procedures prescribed by medical professionals, making it an exception for cases of bone fracture or breakage caused due to accidents.
However, few common symptoms that can be identified without a fracture include:
- Backaches, which will indicate a weak spine.
- Gradual loss of height caused due to bone thinning and density, which also tends to affect posture.
- Reduced pain threshold in case of any mishap or accident that puts your bone strength to the test.
Whatever the case may be, immediate medical attention is advised with X-rays and bone density tests.
Treatment and diagnosis of osteoporosis
Height is the first indicator of a developing osteoporosis condition. The spine gets affected by reduced bone density and thinning which in turn affects your overall height and posture. Doctors will check your height and compare to see if there are any glaring difference that indicates a cause of concern.
Other common diagnostic techniques include:
- DEXA scan to assess the bone loss in the early stages.
- Quantitative computed tomography that uses higher levels of radiation to assess bone density and quality.
- Ultrasound tests to detect early signs of developing osteoporosis.
Treatment options for osteoporosis:
Osteoporosis is a condition which cannot be cured or reversed. Early detection of osteoporosis will help you manage the condition better.
Proper diet: Calcium forms the most important part of any diet to ensure a healthy bone density. Calcium can be taken in the form of supplements or can be availed from food sources like milk, yogurt, and orange juice among other plant-based milk beverages. Food sources that are rich in calcium also include vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, and leafy greens.
Certain foods to avoid: It is also necessary to avoid foods like red meat, soft drinks, alcohol, and caffeine among others that cut down the levels of calcium that can be absorbed by your body.
Incorporate exercise: Exercising daily for 35 to 40 mins is recommended to strengthen your bones and improve their overall health along with maintaining a proper diet.
Quit smoking: People who smoke, have a higher risk of developing osteoporosis than those who don’t.
Medication: Your doctor may prescribe a number of bisphosphonate medications as part of the treatment and diagnosis of osteoporosis.