Osteoporosis, or the milder version named osteopenia, is a decrease in bone density.  Picture a sponge with little holes; this is healthy bone.  Now picture that same sponge which has been used and torn and now the holes (or pores) are bigger; that is osteoporosis, literally meaning bone full of pores.  Because the bone has more or bigger holes, it is more susceptible to fracture.  Osteoporosis is called the “silent killer” because we may not know we have it until a bone fractures.  Not all fractures are indicative of osteoporosis, but if you have a history of several bone fractures or are post-menopausal or have a long history of poor nutrition or prolonged use of steroids, it is best to have your bone density checked.

Bones need the right amount of good forces placed upon them in order to build new bone cells, to strengthen the bones.  Excessive imbalanced forces or inadequate forces altogether destroy bone or don’t stimulate sufficient growth.  Physical therapy helps a person understand and be able to perform activities and exercises which strengthen the bones safely.  And a person needs to know which exercises are not safe; for example, a person with osteoporosis in the spine should not be performing sit-ups.  Research has shown that those women in the post-menopausal age group should not be doing exercises in which the spine is in a rounded position, including sit-ups, which increases the risk of fracture.  Exercises which build strength while elongating the spine are best.  And therapy involves learning how to perform all of the daily tasks, like sitting in your favorite chair, in a way that is building spine health.  From what we eat to how we bend over, all of the choices we make can influence the health of our bones and our whole bodies.

Call today for an osteoporosis or osteopenia treatment appointment with Anita!
Reach our Reno / Sparks Physical Therapy Office at: (775) 870-1511