How many people in the U.S. are at risk of developing osteoporosis? According to the International Osteoporosis Foundation’s report, it was around 52 million in 2010. By 2020, it’s estimated the number will exceed 61 million men and women over the age of 49.
It’s hard to tell the exact numbers. Not every older adult is screened.
Osteoporosis was often thought of as a disease women get, so men weren’t frequently tested. Current screening recommendations still say women 65 or older should get screened. If there’s a family history or risk factors, the recommended age drops to 50 or older. Research now indicates men should also get tested.
What Happens if Low Bone Density is Discovered?
If your parent undergoes a DXA screening and low bone mass is identified, there are things they should do. The doctor may recommend prescription medications to help strengthen the bones. Your parent also needs to make sure that future doctors are aware of the risk of osteoporosis when prescribing new medications. Some medications impact bone health and should be avoided.
Your parent needs to follow the doctor’s dietary recommendations. Foods rich in calcium and vitamin D are important. Dried beans, low-fat or no-fat dairy and lean proteins like fish are best. Whole grains like farro and barley are better than white rice or inexpensive pasta.
Make sure your mom or dad get enough exercise. Exercises should focus on building muscle in the legs and helping with balance. You may want to ask about physical therapy to help them get started.
Support Them When Necessary
-Have your mom or dad see a doctor regularly. Every few years, they should have their bone density checked. This is the best way to determine if osteoporosis is present or an increased risk. If they’re fine, make sure they continue on this path. Diet, exercise, and regular screenings help prevent osteoporosis.
-Schedule appointments for them if they’re forgetful. Once the day arrives, drive them to the doctors and ask questions. As long as you’re on the list granting you permission to talk about your mom or dad’s medical information, the doctor can ask any questions you have. Diet is a good place to start.
-Cooking meals that help strengthen bones takes planning. Meal preparation is one service caregivers offer. Caregivers can come to your parents’ house each day and cook meals that help strengthen their bones. They can work with your parents to learn favorite foods and even take them to the grocery store. Learn more about fees and beneficial senior care services by calling an agency.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering Senior Care in Alpharetta, GA, please call the caring staff at Always Care Nursing Service today.Call for Assistance: (404) 266-8773 or (800) 989-7828