The bones are made up of calcium and other minerals, which are constantly being broken down and rebuilt. For those who have osteoporosis, the bone tissue is being broken down faster than its being rebuilt. This means that bones become less dense and more brittle over time. Increasing the risk of fractures, bone loss can happen without any other warning signs. The term for this is osteoporosis. It can occur for years without being diagnosed.
Although this condition is serious, it’s not uncommon. Women, especially, are at a higher risk of developing osteoporosis. After menopause, when estrogen levels start to decrease, women will lose bone mass faster. Men will also lose bone mass as they age. More than 10 million people have osteoporosis, and it’s a condition that should be taken seriously. This does not mean that people with this condition can’t treat it, however, and there are multiple options for treatment available today.
Understanding Treatment Options
Seniors who have osteoporosis can focus on slowing the rate of their bone loss or increasing the rate of bone formation. There are two types of medications which are used. A drug that is used to slow down the rate of bone loss is known as an antiresorptive medication. A drug that increases the rate of bone formation is an anabolic medication.
There are several of these medications. However, bisphosphonates are typically the most common prescribed. They can stop bone loss and reduce the risk of fractures by 50%. Your doctor may recommend this for you if you have a risk. Another common medication is calcitonin. This is a naturally occurring hormone. It prevents bone breakdown, and may also help to ease the pain in people who have already experienced spine fractures. Available as a nasal spray or injection, this is a common medication. Two other classes of medications include denosumab and SARMs, an osteoanabolic agent. These are less commonly prescribed, but can also be used in some people; indeed, research shows that osteoanabolic agents can slow osteoporosis.
The most common anabolic medication is teriparatide. This anabolic medication is approved to treat both men and women who have osteoporosis. It’s specifically designed for severe cases and anyone who has a high risk of fractures. This is a man-made parathyroid hormone, which works to stimulate new bone growth. When taken as directed, it decreases the risk of spinal fractures and improves bone density. You can receive this medication as a daily injection for up to two years.
In addition to medication treatments, having a good self-care routine can help to keep your bones in good shape over time. Regular exercise and making sure to consume adequate calcium and Vitamin D are also important. Your doctor may also have specific supplement recommendations based on your personal health.
With great advancements in the management of osteoporosis today, most people can find that their condition is stable or improves over time. Bone density is important for good health, and anyone should pay attention to their bone health as they age to prevent any problems.