Moms more likely to get osteoporosis

Stop bone loss before it starts



According to Matt Denno, M.D. from Rosendale Family Practice, childbearing and breastfeeding can also have an effect on a woman’s bone loss. “The longer a woman goes without her menstrual cycle, either from pregnancy or breastfeeding, her risk of osteoporosis increases,” says Dr. Denno. “An absence of a menstrual cycle produces decreased estrogen which then causes a decrease in a woman’s bone mass.

“Bone loss can be slowed by good prevention, however,” Dr. Denno claims. “An active lifestyle teamed with a healthy diet rich in calcium wards off any problems in the future.”

Some women develop osteopenia. This is a condition where bone mineral density (BMD) is lower than normal peak BMD, but not low enough to be classified as osteoporosis. Having osteopenia puts you at greater risk of developing osteoporosis in the future.

Both osteopenia and osteoporosis are diagnosed with a bone mineral density test, the most accurate a DEXA scan. This is a valuable tool, and a fairly accurate predictor of your risk of fractures.

A BMD test is measured as a T-score. Above -1 indicates that your bone density is normal. Between -1 and -2.5 is a sign of osteopenia. Below -2.5 indicates osteoporosis.


Patricia Palmer Hurd is a freelance writer in Orange County who specializes in health-related subjects.