When a sneeze can break your bones – That’s Osteoporosis

On 20 October the National Osteoporosis Foundation of South Africa is urging the public to take early action to protect their bone and muscle health, and for health authorities and physicians to protect their communities’ bone health as we celebrate World Osteoporosis Day.

Osteoporosis is the most common bone disease and is an underdiagnosed and undertreated silent disease.  As the population of the world has aged over the last three decades, the incidence of hip fracture has increased significantly.

One in three women aged 50 years and over will sustain a fragility fracture, as will one in five men. Fragility fractures impose a tremendous burden on our older people, their families and carers, and our economy. A broad range of osteoporosis treatments, available in an array of dosing regiments, have been shown to significantly reduce the risk of hip fractures, vertebral fractures and other clinically apparent fractures.

Being the only non-profit, voluntary health organisation dedicated to promoting lifelong bone health in South Africa, the National Osteoporosis Foundation of South Africa (NOFSA), is dedicated to increasing awareness of Osteoporosis.

Says Teréza Hough, CEO of NOFSA, “There is a serious misconception that Osteoporosis is a normal part of ageing. Although it is mostly age-related, it is not exclusive to the senior population, and more importantly, it can be prevented by a healthy lifestyle and good nutrition from an early age”.

The following groups are particularly vulnerable to developing Osteoporosis:

  • Low bone mass is common amongst people living with coeliac disease.
  • Falls occur nine times more frequently among people living with
  • People with asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease are often prescribed corticosteroids which can have a negative effect on bone health.
  • Bone health is compromised in people living with
  • Approximately half of men diagnosed with prostate cancer which receives androgen deprivation therapy will experience a rapid decline in bone mineral density.
  • Post-menopausal women with hormone receptor-positive breast cancer.

You can celebrate World Osteoporosis Day by wearing white on the 20th of October.  Celebrate good bone health by ensuring that you and your family avoid premature bone loss and maintain a healthy skeleton by following a balanced diet every day and where necessary, take approved elements to boost your physical wellbeing and exercise.

If you are concerned about your risk of developing osteoporosis visit our website to do a free risk assessment.

NOFSA is also hosting a 5km Fun Run on the 30th of November in Durbanville  to raise funds and awareness for osteoporosis.

You will not only run for fun, but there will be lots of prizes up for grabs too! Bring along your kids to enjoy face painting and jumping castles -Sherpa Kids will keep them busy and entertained.

Food trucks and vendors will be on site. It is going to be a truly amazing family day out!  Contact info@osteoporosis.org.za for more information.

If you are concerned about your risk of developing osteoporosis visit our website to do a free risk assessment.

Please help NOFSA make a loud noise about this Silent Disease by making a donation! Visit www.osteoporosis.org.za/contact-us/donate/

Follow the conversation on social media @OsteoporosisSA and join in by using #LoveYourBones.