Anyone can get weak bones at any point in their lives. Genetics, insufficient nutrient intake and age are the main causes of osteoporosis and other bone problems, but you can fight them back with the right foods, exercises and mindset.
Find out which are the early signs of weak bones and learn what you can do to counteract these warnings.
Are your bones weak? Watch out for these signs
Fractures and general weakness are both signs of fragile bones, but late ones. When these symptoms start to take shape, it means the bones are already vulnerable and on their limit.
Nevertheless, there are some early signals that you can pick up and try to fix as soon as possible. If you act quickly enough and get the right support, you may reverse the weakness completely and actually end up with stronger bones than before.
The secret is to pay close attention to your body to spot any change fast enough and act on it. Here are the signs you should be looking for.
Anyone with a family history of bone problems or osteoporosis is more likely to develop the same condition.
Even if no one has ever been diagnosed, keep an eye on your family for any possible sign like height shrinking or dowager’s humps.
There are several factors that can lead to gum recession. Smoking is one of them, as it is nutrient deficiency. However, it can also be a sign of weak bones.
Losing bone mass can lead to the gum tissue detaching itself from the teeth and hanging looser than it should. As a consequence, you may also start experiencing (https://www.onlinetips.com/how-to-prevent-tooth-decay/) because they have no support.
If you need to use your arms to help you stand up from a chair and you have no condition that could justify that difficulty, then it could be an early sign of bone mass loss. Feeling your arm falter when turning a knob or losing balance very easily also deserve attention.
Cramps, bone pain and muscle aches
As the years go by, new aches can settle into the body. Since this is a fairly normal development, albeit painful, people tend to dismiss it.
Nevertheless, it can also be a symptom of weak bones, particularly of vitamin D deficiency. This vitamin plays an import role as a bone builder, but it also affects the muscles. Therefore, bone pain and muscle aches combined could indicate low levels of vitamin D.
Height shrinking is a slow developing symptom. Bad posture is usually associated with it as hunching will eventually shape the bone and muscle structure.
However, it can be a sign of weak bones. The principle is the same as with receding gums. As bones progressively lose mass, muscles will also start poorly clingy to them. The person may then experience height shrinking accompanied most times by bad posture due to muscle weakness too.
Depending on the person’s posture and genetics, they can also develop a little hump on their back.
Strengthen those bones up
Knowing the early signs of bone weakness is important, but so is to know how to revert them. It’s quite easy and simple to do something for your bones. Mostly, you just have to stick to healthy activities and foods and avoid any bad habits.
Increase your calcium intake
99% of all the calcium in a human body is concentrated in the bones and teeth. Thus, this mineral deficiency is bound to have a great effect on bone mass.
Increasing its consumption can help keep these mineral levels ideal. Women are a particularly vulnerable group for calcium deficiency due to menstruations and later to menopause. According to the National Osteoporosis Foundation, women who are 50 years old or younger should consume on average 1000mg of calcium daily. After 50, it should increase to 1200mg.
Men need fewer quantities of calcium because they don’t lose as much as women. Up until they’re 70 years-old the recommended dose is of 1000mg of calcium per day, increasing to 1200mg after this age.
The richest foods in this mineral are dairy, dark green leafy vegetables (except for spinach), soya beans, nuts and foods fortified with calcium.
Increase your vitamin D intake
Vitamin D helps bones better absorb calcium and it also affects muscle health.
Ideally, you should have a blood level of 30 ng/ml (75 nmol/l) of this vitamin to prevent osteoporosis and other bone diseases.
Manage your weight
Obesity or simply being overweight can put too much pressure, tension and weight on bones, making them progressively weaker.
Nevertheless, crash diets or a sudden weight loss can also be harmful to bones. Cutting on calories intake will also mean cutting on nutrients beneficial to the organism.
Try to manage your weight to find the right scale number for you. Remember that skinny doesn’t necessarily mean healthier.
Light activity like aerobics, resistance exercises or simply walking while maintaining a good posture and carrying something can of great help. These small efforts will put a soft pressure on bones that will stimulate them to improve their density. Moreover, your muscles will become stronger to hold the skeleton in place and avoid bad postures.
Pulling heavy weights or doing vigorous exercises can be harmful if you’re already presenting signs of weak bones. Avoid these to prevent a fracture.
Keep active and motivated
Getting weaker bones is normal with age, but that doesn’t mean you can’t fight it. Make sure to keep a healthy and diverse diet to get all the nutrients your body needs and get rid of bad habits like smoking. It can be hard to change your routine, but it will pay back on the long run. And, of course, don’t forget to exercise. Simple and easy movements can go a long way to prevent bone density loss.
If you don’t know what kind of exercises to do, check out these suggestions by physical therapists Bob Schrupp and Brad Heineck: