Osteoporosis is a condition where your bones will get weaker and become brittle. It will make your bones so fragile that even a fall or mild stresses like coughing or bending over can result in a fracture. The common fractures related to this condition often occur in hip, spine or wrist.
Bone is a living tissue in our body that is being continuously broken down and being replaced. But if the creation of new bone cannot keep up with the loss of old bone, osteoporosis can occur.
This disease is found in both men and women of all races. But white as well as Asian women, especially those who are old and past their menopause have more risk for developing osteoporosis. Some medications along with a healthy diet and some weight-bearing exercise can curb the bone loss and will strengthen the bones that are already weak.
It is difficult to diagnose osteoporosis during the early stages as there will be no visible and noticeable symptoms. But once your bones get weaker you may experience the following symptoms.
• Back pain which is caused by the fracturing or collapsing of vertebra
• Height loss over time
• A stooped posture
• A bone that will be broken easily than expected
Your bones are constantly going through a process of renewal or regeneration. Your body continuously breaks down the old bone and creates new one. When you are at a young age, the process of bone creation is faster than the breaking down of older bone, and as a result your bone mass will increase. However, when you get older, i.e., after the early 20s, this process will become slow. Normally, most people reach at their highest bone mass by the age of 30. After this, the bone mass will be lost faster than it is being created.
This imbalance between the creation and breaking down of bone leads to the condition called osteoporosis. How vulnerable you are to develop this disease depends on the amount of bone mass you gained in your youth.
Peak bone mass will be hereditary and will vary by ethnic group. If you have higher peak bone mass, then you are less likely to develop this disease as you have enough bone mass “in store”. If you failed to attain enough bone mass at your young age then you will be more vulnerable to this disease.