How senior citizens can keep their bones strong

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Worldwide Day of the Aged: Older folks typically have imaginative and prescient or steadiness issues, which makes them extra susceptible to falls.

International Day of the Third Age: How older people can keep their bones strong

Consultant picture. Courtesy Wikimedia Commons

As a rustic, we’re seeing a gentle enhance in life expectancy. With the extra years in life, older folks can endure from numerous medical circumstances in addition to bone and joint ache.

Older folks typically have poor imaginative and prescient or steadiness issues, making them extra susceptible to falls. These are particularly aggravated on slippery or moist surfaces.

With outdated age, there’s additionally weakening of the bones (osteoporosis).

We construct bone mass all through our early years in childhood and adolescence, whereas in outdated age we are likely to lose bone mass. On the age of 30, most individuals attain their peak bone mass. Osteoporosis is extra more likely to have an effect on ladies, particularly postmenopausal ladies. Osteoporosis is a lack of bone mass, or BMD, which causes microscopic injury to the bones and will increase their vulnerability to fractures.

Resulting from osteoporosis, even minor falls can result in fractures, the most typical being fractures of the wrist, backbone, and hip. These falls may result in critical head or chest accidents.

Fractures in osteoporotic bones are gradual to heal and will require lengthy durations of immobilization or mattress relaxation. Even surgical fixation of fractures in osteoporotic bones is difficult.

Osteoporosis or weak bones can result in bone ache: again ache, knee or leg ache, stooped posture or hunchback, fractures even with minor falls.

Osteoporosis could be identified by measuring bone mineral density utilizing DXA. It needs to be included within the annual well being checkup for seniors. If identified early, osteoporosis could be handled and additional weakening of the bones could be prevented.

On your bones to remain sturdy or in form, you want train and good diet.


The Really useful Dietary Allowance (RDA) is 1,000 milligrams (mg) to 1,200 milligrams of calcium per day. Milk, cheese, yogurt, darkish leafy greens, rooster, and boiled eggs are wealthy sources of calcium and phosphorous.

Your physique wants vitamin D to soak up calcium. For adults ages 19 to 70, the RDA for vitamin D is 600 worldwide items (IU) per day. The advice will increase to 800 IU per day for adults over 71 years of age.

Wealthy sources of calcium and phosphorus embrace cooked eggs, rooster, darkish inexperienced greens, yogurt, cheese, milk, and cheese. On your physique to soak up calcium, you want vitamin D. The RDA for vitamin D for adults is 600 worldwide items (IU) per day. For folks age 71 and older, the advised each day consumption will increase to 800 IU. Vitamin D is considerable in milk, soybeans, mushrooms, cod liver oil, and egg yolks. The pores and skin produces vitamin D when uncovered to the solar. Levocarnitine, vitamin E and different vital amino acids are useful for muscle well being.


Exercising for no less than half-hour (adults) every single day helps maintain muscle mass and bones sturdy. Biking, weight coaching, resistance workout routines, strolling uphill with a lightweight backpack are some good routines for good bone power. Train additionally builds muscle power and helps keep good posture and joint stability.

Bodily exercise to particularly profit bone well being should contain loading (stressing) the skeleton. For adults, strolling, jogging, stair climbing, step by step growing weight coaching, leisure actions equivalent to mountain climbing, tennis, and steadiness coaching also needs to be included as a routine.

Pilates and yoga assist with flexibility and core power. Weight reduction in case you are chubby. Obese individuals are extra more likely to develop arthritis and osteoporosis.

Good management of sugars, ldl cholesterol and different medical issues additionally helps. Cease chewing tobacco, smoking and consuming alcohol, because it harms bone well being.

Precautions needs to be taken to forestall falls particularly within the aged inhabitants:

  • Older adults ought to put on correct footwear to forestall slipping
  • use a cane if vital for steadiness
  • verify imaginative and prescient recurrently
  • maintain the bedside lamps on
  • put seize bars round the home to help mobility
  • keep away from unfastened rugs or rugs within the residence
  • Physiotherapy for strengthening muscle mass.
  • steadiness coaching

The creator is a guide orthopedic surgeon at International Hospital in Parel, Mumbai. Views are private.

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How senior citizens can keep their bones strong