Postmenopausal Osteoporosis: 10 Unusual Causes of Bone Loss In Women

Unusual Causes of Bone Loss In Women That Shouldn’t Be Ignored

What increases your chances of suffering from postmenopausal osteoporosis? Scroll down to know everything.

Women are more susceptible to developing certain health problems. After the age of 30, women start losing bone density at a faster rate compared to men. Osteoporosis is a common health condition that occurs due to low bone density and deteriorating bone tissue, leading to weak and fragile bones. While anyone can develop osteoporosis, postmenopausal women are particularly vulnerable to this condition. In fact, it is estimated that over half of all women over the age of 50 will experience a fracture due to osteoporosis in their lifetime. We spoke to Dr Manjusha Goel, Lead Consultant – Obstetrics & Gynaecology at the CK Birla Hospital (R), Delhi, to understand more about Postmenopausal osteoporosis and the various risk factors attached to it.

Postmenopausal Osteoporosis: What You Need To Know

Postmenopausal osteoporosis occurs when the body’s natural process of bone formation is disrupted. During menopause, the levels of oestrogen in a woman’s body drop significantly, and oestrogen plays a key role in bone health. Without enough oestrogen, the bones may not form as they should, leading to weaker bones that are more prone to fracture.

There are several risk factors for postmenopausal osteoporosis, including a family history of osteoporosis, being thin or having a small frame, smoking, excessive alcohol consumption, a sedentary lifestyle, and a diet low in calcium and vitamin D. Women who have had an early menopause, which is defined as menopause occurring before the age of 45, are also at a higher risk.

Although there is no fixed cause of low bone density in women, it has been seen that lifestyle plays a major role in contributing to bone health. Due to long working hours, one might not be able to do the amount of physical activity required. Prolonged inactivity can result in constant cramps and pain in the legs because of the stiffness of the bones. Obesity is also one of the leading causes of weaker bones, as excess weight puts a lot of pressure on the bones and joints. Apart from that, smoking and drinking continuously deteriorated bone health. During smoking, free radicals are produced in the body, which are not only harmful to bones but also harm the lungs and other major organs. These free radicals can kill the cells that help in bone formation, so bone density remains low. Alcohol consumption also reduces the secretion of hormones necessary for bone health. Moreover, excess sodium intake is also risky for the bones as it increases the release of calcium in the urine.

It is essential for women to understand the correlation between menopause and osteoporosis in order to take proactive steps to manage their bone health. One way to do this is through lifestyle modifications such as a healthy diet rich in calcium and vitamin D, regular exercise, and avoiding smoking and excessive alcohol consumption. Adequate calcium and vitamin D intake are essential for building and maintaining strong bones, and exercise helps promote bone density by stimulating bone formation.

Ways of Preventing Loss of Bone Density After Menopause

In addition to lifestyle modifications, women with osteoporosis can also go for medication therapy. Hormone replacement therapy also helps in reducing osteoporosis. There are several medications available that can slow down bone loss and reduce the risk of fractures, including bisphosphonates, denosumab, and teriparatide. These medications can have side effects and may not be suitable for everyone, so it is important to discuss the benefits and risks with a healthcare provider.

Proper Nutrition In The Diet

Bone density problems can be prevented by having a balanced, nutritious diet. It is recommended to add fruits and liquids that are rich in calcium, vitamin D, protein, potassium, and magnesium to strengthen the bones. Also, one must know the number of calories that are to be consumed according to age, height, and weight.

Regular Exercise

Physical activity is necessary because it helps in the process of bone and muscle strengthening. In older adults, exercise might not add to bone mass but help develop muscle mass and balance. One should not overburden the bones to avoid falling. If one suffers from extreme bone problems, avoiding bulky exercises is beneficial.

Fall Prevention To Help Prevent Fractures

People with bone problems should check their posture while sitting and standing. Immediate, sudden actions may cause the bone to crack. Also, avoid handling heavy things to reduce the chance of falling or having fractures.

Adding Supplements to the Diet

One might not get the required number of vitamins, so taking supplements can be helpful. It will help reduce the deficiencies.

With age and the use of certain medications, bone health is most likely to be affected, especially after pregnancy. However, it is recommended to keep a check on the underlying symptoms related to bone problems. It is also recommended to get into the habit of routine check-ups, and based on the patient’s age, weight, and height, the doctor may recommend the right medication and treatment options to keep the bones healthy.

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