Osteoporosis is a major health condition in which the bones become brittle and weak. As bone mass decreases along with age, the production of new bones cannot replace the loss of old ones. This leads to osteoporosis, commonly occurring in the hip, wrist, or spine. Risk factors that have been associated with osteoporosis are genetic and environmental variables.
Due to the increasing aging population, the prevalence of osteoporosis is expected to be higher in Asia. Osteoporosis can affect both men and women, however, women tend to have lower bone mass compared to men. In addition, due to a drop in estrogen levels post menopause, women are at higher risk of bone loss compared to men.
Usually, there are no symptoms in the early stages of bone loss and most people may not even be aware that they have osteoporosis until a fracture happens. However, it is still important to know the symptoms, if they ever do occur:
- Back pain, caused by a fractured or collapsed vertebra
- Brittle fingernails
- Gradual loss of height over time
- A stooped posture
- Bones that break much more easily than expected
- Have a healthy and balanced diet
- Eat calcium-rich foods
- Eat enough Vitamin D
- Limit alcohol and caffeine consumption
- Avoid smoking
- Do regular weight bearing exercise
- Osteoporosis (2022).Mayo Clinic. Retrieved from https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/osteoporosis/symptoms-causes/syc-20351968
- Chan, C. Y., Subramaniam, S., Mohamed, N., Ima-Nirwana, S., Muhammad, N., Fairus, A., … & Chin, K. Y. (2020). Determinants of bone health status in a multi-ethnic population in Klang Valley, Malaysia. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 17(2), 384.
- Nurumal, M. S., Isa, M. L. M., Hatta, N. N. K. N. M., Daud, A., Ibrahim, M., Sharifudin, M. A., & Deraman, S. (2019). Bone health status among postmenopausal women in malaysia. prevalence, 24, 6.
- Prevention osteoporosis (2022). NHS UK. Retrieved from https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/osteoporosis/prevention/#:~:text=Regular%20exercise%20is%20essential.,and%20helping%20to%20prevent%20osteoporosis
- Osteoporosis (2022). Retrieved from https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/conditionsandtreatments/osteoporosis#treatment-for-osteoporosis