Osteoporosis is a common skeletal condition, particularly affecting women over the age of 55, in which bones become brittle and weak making a person more susceptible to bone fractures. It occurs when bones lose minerals, such as calcium, a lot quicker than what the body can replace them and this causes the bones to lose their thickness (density or mass) and overall strength. Osteoporosis means ‘porous bones’ or ‘bones with holes’. If you compare a healthy bone to an osteoporotic bone, you will see numerous holes and large spaces within the bone as opposed to the bone being very dense and compact, as seen in the image below. This is what causes the bones to become so fragile and prone to breaking. Any bone can be affected, but bones of the spine, hip, and wrist are the most commonly affected sites.
Osteoporosis affects approximately 1 million Australians - eight out of ten being women. Some risk factors include;
Great news is that osteoporosis is largely preventable. Although some risk factors can’t be changed, men and women can take numerous steps to ensure adequate bone health and decrease the likelihood of developing osteoporosis.
How can your Chiropractor help?
It is important to note that Chiropractic cannot treat or cure osteoporosis, but, your Chiropractor will work with you and alongside your team of health professionals to help you manage adequate joint, spinal, and muscle function - allowing the musculoskeletal and nervous systems to function at their best. This will help improve your overall strength, balance, and proprioception, and therefore decrease the likelihood of falls and bone fractures. Fractures can lead to chronic pain, disability, and a loss of independence - so managing bone and overall body health and awareness to avoid fractures is a priority. Your Chiropractor will do a combination of soft tissue therapy, mobilisations, and weight-bearing/proprioception exercises to help promote mobility, stability, and strength. They will work alongside other health professionals to ensure you are getting adequate care and have all of the tools and knowledge you require to help you live a healthy and pain free life, managing this condition as best as possible. Osteoporosis is not a painful condition until a fracture does occur but if you do experience and chronic pain post fracture, or any pain or discomfort associated with any biomechanical changes your body may experience, your Chiropractor can help ease any aches and pains to ensure you can keep moving, exercising, and functioning to the best of your ability.
Dr Melanie Xabregas is an experienced and passionate chiropractor with a special interest in helping children experience optimal performance and longeviety in dance and gymnastics. She brings a gentle, caring and friendly approach to her examination and treatment. Learn more about Dr Melanie
Available for consultations Tuesday & Friday between 2pm - 6pm