What is osteoporosis?

Osteoporosis is a medical condition characterised by the weakening of bones, making them fragile and more prone to fractures. It occurs when the density and quality of bone decrease.

What are the risk factors for developing osteoporosis?

Risk factors include ageing, hormonal changes (especially in postmenopausal women), low body weight, family history, certain medications, lack of physical activity, and a diet low in calcium and vitamin D.

How is osteoporosis diagnosed?

Osteoporosis is often diagnosed through a bone mineral density (BMD) test, typically performed using dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DEXA) scanning.

Can osteoporosis be prevented?

Yes, osteoporosis can be prevented or delayed through lifestyle measures such as regular weight-bearing exercise, a diet rich in calcium and vitamin D, and avoiding smoking and excessive alcohol consumption.

What role does calcium play in bone health?

Calcium is a vital mineral for bone health. It is a major component of bone tissue, and an adequate intake is crucial for maintaining bone density and strength.

How can one improve their calcium intake?

Include dairy products, leafy green vegetables, fortified foods, and supplements if necessary in your diet to ensure an adequate calcium intake.

What role does vitamin D play in preventing osteoporosis?

Vitamin D is essential for the absorption of calcium in the body. It helps maintain proper levels of calcium and phosphorus in the blood, promoting bone health.

What exercises are beneficial for preventing osteoporosis?

Weight-bearing exercises such as walking, jogging, dancing, and strength training can help improve bone density and reduce the risk of osteoporosis.

Are there medications available for treating osteoporosis?

Yes, several medications, including bisphosphonates, hormone therapy, and denosumab, are prescribed to manage osteoporosis by either increasing bone density or slowing down bone loss.

How often should one undergo bone density testing?

The frequency of bone density testing depends on individual risk factors. Generally, postmenopausal women and men over 50 with risk factors may be advised to have a bone density test every 1-2 years.

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