Osteoporosis Ongoing Care
If you begin to take medication for osteoporosis, you will still need to continue a diet rich in calcium and vitamin D, combined with regular exercise. Your WellStar physician may also recommend other long-term therapies including:
- Hormone (estrogen) therapy can help maintain bone density, especially when started soon after menopause. However, hormone therapy can also increase your risk of blood clots, endometrial cancer, breast cancer and possibly heart disease. Because of these concerns, hormone therapy is no longer a first-choice treatment.
- Physical therapy programs may help you increase bone strength and improve posture, balance and muscle strength, making falls less likely.
Protect your back with these measures:
- Good posture – keeping your head high, chin tucked, shoulders back, upper back flat and lower spine arched
- Place a rolled towel in the small of your back when driving or sitting for an extended period
- Don't lean over while reading or doing handwork
- When lifting, bend at your knees and lift with your legs, keeping your upper back straight
Prevent falls with these measures:
- Wear low-heeled shoes with non-slip soles.
- Check your house for electrical cords, area rugs and slippery surfaces that might cause you to trip or fall.
- Keep rooms brightly lit.
- Install grab bars just inside and outside your shower door.
- Make sure you can get in and out of your bed easily.
- Don’t ignore chronic pain, which can limit your mobility and cause even more pain. Discuss pain management strategies with your WellStar physician.