WORLD OSTEOPOROSIS DAY
World Osteoporosis Day is observed every year on October 20th. The day is dedicated to raising awareness of the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of osteoporosis.
Osteoporosis is a disease in which the density and strength of the bone are reduced. Osteoporosis affects over 200 million people in the world. This is according to the International Osteoporosis Foundation. Because of its prevalence, osteoporosis is considered a significant public health concern. In the United States and Europe, 30% of all menopausal women have osteoporosis.
A vast majority of these women are likely to experience at least one bone fracture during their remaining years. Once a fracture occurs, it increases the likelihood of having another. Common fractures caused by osteoporosis include vertebral fractures, hip fractures, and wrist fractures.
White and Asian women, especially those past menopause, are at the highest risk of getting osteoporosis. Other people are at risk of getting this degenerative bone disease. These people include those with a family history of the disease and men and women with smaller body frames. People who do not get enough calcium, and those who have had gastrointestinal surgery are also more prone to getting osteoporosis.
There is no cure for osteoporosis. Once bone loss occurs, it’s not possible to get it back. This is why prevention is the best medicine. One of the best ways to prevent osteoporosis is to get adequate amounts of calcium. Foods rich in calcium include:
- Low-fat dairy products
- Almonds and almond milk
- Dark leafy green vegetables
- Canned salmon or sardines with bones
- Calcium-fortified orange juice
Another way to prevent osteoporosis is to practice weight-bearing activities. Getting enough Vitamin D is also essential.
HOW TO OBSERVE #WorldOsteoporosisDay
Health care providers around the world host a variety of events for World Osteoporosis Day. Many of these providers encourage their patients to have a bone density screening. This type of test measures the proportion of mineral in your bones. Some health care professionals host bone health workshops for both adults and children.
The best way to participate in World Osteoporosis Day is to learn more about the disease. Think of things you can do now to protect your bones. If you are at risk of the illness, schedule a bone density screening with your health care provider. Take the Osteoporosis Risk Check to find out if you’re at risk for osteoporosis or fractures. No matter what you do, be sure to use #WorldOsteoporosisDay when sharing on social media.
WORLD OSTEOPOROSIS DAY HISTORY
The United Kingdom’s National Osteoporosis Society launched World Osteoporosis Day on October 20th, 1996. The International Osteoporosis Foundation has supported the day since 1997. The World Health Organization (WHO) acted as co-sponsor of World Osteoporosis Day in 1998 and 1999. Today, national osteoporosis patient societies host events in over 90 countries throughout the world.