Lions to spread message on bone health

| 14/08/2009

(CNS): Following the success and public interest in the last meeting the Lions Club of Tropical Gardens is hosting another   Osteoporosis awareness meeting. Aside from offering key information on the condition the service club said it will give free vouchers to those that qualify for bone density exams. Osteoporosis is a thinning of the bones that occurs over time for most people. Although, most common in women, it can also affect men as they age.

The club will hold its next meeting on Thursday, 27 August at the John Gray Memorial Hall starting at 7.30pm where there will be a panel of medical practitioners who will speak on risk factors, symptoms and prevention of osteoporosis.

Osteoporosis is a debilitating disease that weakens the bones and robs individuals of their independence. Osteoporosis occurs when bones lose minerals, such as calcium, more quickly than the body can replace them, leading to a loss of bone thickness (bone mass or density).  As a result the bones become thinner and less dense, so that even a minor bump or accident can cause serious fractures.  People cannot feel their bones getting weaker.  In fact, they may not know that they have osteoporosis until they break a bone.  A person with osteoporosis can fracture a bone from a minor fall, or in serious cases, from a simple action such as a sneeze or even spontaneously.  Women can lose up to 20 percent of their bone mass in five to seven years after menopause. Osteoporosis is associated with 1.2 million bone fractures each year.

The good news is that osteoporosis can be prevented.  The following five steps can optimize bone health and help prevent osteoporosis.  (1)Get the daily recommended amounts of calcium and vitamin D. (2) Engage in regular weight bearing and muscle-strengthening exercise. (3) Avoid smoking and excessive alcohol. (4) Talk to your healthcare provider about bone health and (5) have a bone density test and take medication when appropriate.


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