What is Osteoporosis?
Osteoporosis is a disease that affects over 1 million Australians.
To maintain healthy bone, bone cells have to be equally removed (resorbed) and deposited. When more bone cells are being removed than deposited, bones become weaker – this is called osteopenia. Eventually bones can become brittle and easy to fracture – named osteoporosis.
Osteoporosis is diagnosed using a bone mineral density test – which measures the strength of bone and risk of fracture.


What do calcium and vitamin D have to do with Osteoporosis?
Calcium is needed in the body for many things; including helping your blood clot, heart function and muscles work. If the body does not have enough calcium, it starts to absorb it from bone, leading to bone thinning and weakening. Eating calcium (found in dairy and leafy green vegetables) helps to minimise bone breakdown.

Vitamin D helps the body absorb calcium. Even if you eat lots of calcium, it will not make it to your bones without vitamin D. You can get vitamin D by spending some time in the sun.


Exercise and Osteoporosis
Recent research has shown that exercise has an important role to play in the management of osteoporosis. Exercise helps to maintain and even improve bone mineral density at all ages. It has been shown that exercise needs to be regular to have the best benefit (at least 3 times per week).
If you have osteoporosis exercise should be weight bearing (meaning you are on your feet) so your bones can practice taking your weight. It is good to try and progress your exercise so you are being challenged, as well as varying the type of exercise.
It has been shown that for older adults who already have osteoporosis, exercises should be modified to address balance and posture.


Here at Leederville Physiotherapy we can develop a weight bearing exercise program for you to help prevent bone loss and reduce the risk of developing osteoporosis. We also run a 3-D Standing Pilates Class which is a great way to challenge your balance and strength in a weight bearing position.


For advice about the physiotherapy management of osteoporosis in Mount Hawthorn, Leederville, North Perth, Glendalough and Joondanna or to make an appointment contact Leederville Physiotherapy today.