Physical Therapy in the Management of Osteoporosis
June 2, 2015

Osteoporosis is a common disease characterized by thinning and weakening of the bones. Women who are 50 and older are at the greatest risk of developing osteoporosis. However, it can affect men and women of any age. Advanced osteoporosis can cause fractures and lead to hospitalizations. For that reason it is very important for early diagnosis so corrective measures can be taken to reduce the risk of fractures. Below are just a few of the common risk factors for developing osteoporosis.

  • Female gender
  • Over 50 years of age
  • Genetics
  • Cigarette smoking and excessive alcohol intake
  • Sedentary (low physical activity) lifestyle
  • Low calcium and vitamin D levels

As individuals become older and less active their bones become thinner and weaker. Just as muscles become stronger and bigger with exercise, bone has the ability to grow thicker and stronger when they are stressed with weight bearing and resistance exercises. Increased activity is where physical therapy can become extremely beneficial in the management of osteoporosis. A physical therapist can develop a safe and appropriate exercise program in order to improve overall bone strength, keep your bones healthy, and avoid risk of fracture. In addition to weight bearing and strengthening exercises, physical therapy will focus on proper posture, balance to reduce risk of falls, and cardiorespiratory training. It will be important to continue the exercises you learned even after you discharge from physical therapy to maintain life-long bone health and overall fitness.

Premier Physical Therapy offers lots of unique options for your treatment.  We have an Endless Pool with two treadmills and two swim jets that we keep at 92 degrees.  We also have an AlterG treadmill which decreases your weight bearing while you are walking.  The pool and Alter G treadmill can both significantly decrease pressure and pain on joints in order to get you moving with less pain.

For any questions or further information, please call or text us at 843-797-5167.