Are you familiar with osteopenia? It’s a condition that affects bone density, causing bones to become weak and brittle. Osteopenia is a precursor to osteoporosis – a disease in which bones become porous and thin, making them more prone to fractures. In this article, we’ll discuss the causes, symptoms, and treatments of osteopenia.
Causes of Osteopenia:
Osteopenia can be caused by many factors such as:
1. Genetic predisposition: If someone in your family has a history of osteoporosis, you may be at a higher risk.
2. Lack of calcium and vitamin D: Calcium and vitamin D are vital for bone density, and a lack of these nutrients can lead to osteopenia.
3. Hormonal imbalances: Women with low estrogen levels and men with low testosterone levels are more likely to develop osteopenia.
4. Sedentary lifestyle: A sedentary lifestyle can lead to weaker bones due to the lack of physical activity.
Symptoms of Osteopenia:
Osteopenia usually does not cause any symptoms, so many people may not realize they have it. However, some people may experience the following:
1. Height loss
2. Receding gums
3. Brittle nails
4. Frequent bone fractures
5. Dowager’s hump (a curvature of the spine)
Treatments for Osteopenia:
If you’re diagnosed with osteopenia, there are several lifestyle changes and treatment options that can help prevent it from progressing to osteoporosis.
1. Calcium and vitamin D supplements: Calcium and vitamin D supplements can help prevent bone density loss.
2. Weight-bearing exercise: Weight-bearing exercises such as walking, jogging, and aerobics can help maintain or increase bone density.
3. Medications: Medications such as bisphosphonates, hormone therapy, and calcitonin may be prescribed by a physician to prevent bone density loss.
4. Surgery: In rare cases, surgery may be recommended to treat osteopenia related fractures.
If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms or are concerned about your bone health, it’s essential to see a doctor. Gilbert Huang DPM is a foot and ankle surgeon that specializes in the conditions that can be caused by osteopenia. If you’re experiencing any signs of foot pain or discomfort, Dr. Huang can assist you in diagnosing, treating, and managing the condition.
In conclusion, osteopenia is a common condition that can lead to osteoporosis. Although it usually doesn’t cause any symptoms, it’s important to take the necessary preventive steps to avoid developing it. If you’re experiencing any symptoms or have concerns about your bone health, be sure to see Dr. Gilbert Huang DPM.