Osteoporosis not only causes bone weakness but also makes them brittle. The bone strength is so much reduced that even mild stresses like coughing or bending can lead to fractures. These fractures mostly occur in the hip, wrist or spine.

Since Bone is a living connective tissue, it is constantly being broken down and replaced. When the creation of new bone doesn’t keep up with the loss of old bone, Osteoporosis occurs.

Osteoporosis affects men and women regardless of their races. But white and Asian women, especially older women who have crossed their menopause, are at highest risk of developing osteoporosis. A rough estimation shows that approximately 53 million people in the United States either have osteoporosis or are at high risk of developing it.

Osteoporosis symptoms

Some initial symptoms of osteoporosis are

  • receding gums
  • weak grip
  • brittle nails

The early stage of osteoporosis mostly doesn’t show any prominent signs. But once osteoporosis attacks your bones, you might show symptoms like

  • Gradual Loss of height
  • Back pain, caused by a fractured or collapsed vertebra
  • A bent posture
  • A bone which breaks very easily

Osteoporosis causes and risk factors

Osteoporosis can occur because of a medical condition called hyperthyroidism while some medications like long-term oral or injected corticosteroids (prednisonecortisone etc.) can also induce it.

A number of factors can increase your risk of developing osteoporosis. Some of these are uncontrollable however you can govern others.

The uncontrollable factors of osteoporosis include

  • Sex:If you are a woman, you are more likely to develop osteoporosis.
  • Age:The older you get, the greater your risk of osteoporosis (senile osteoporosis)
  • Race:Asian and white people are at higher risk.
  • Family history:Having a parent or sibling with osteoporosis puts you at greater risk.
  • Body frame size: Men and women who have small body frames tend to have a higher risk (due to less bone mass).