Common Causes of Osteoporosis

When you’re young, your bones are at their peak density — but this doesn’t last for long. From about age 30 onward, your bones don’t generally gain any more mass, and slowly begin losing their strength, becoming more porous and often advancing into what is known as osteoporosis. 

Women are more at risk of developing osteoporosis than men. From menopause to bone structure, many factors can cause you to develop this disease faster than someone else in your age group. 

The expert OB/GYNs at North Texas OB/GYN can help you safeguard your bone health and manage your hormone levels throughout your reproductive and menopausal years.

Common causes of osteoporosis 

Overall, osteoporosis is caused by bone loss over time. However, certain factors can lower your bone density, which heightens your risk of developing this disease. Let’s take a look at a few of these common causes of osteoporosis, and why women are more at risk. 

Menopause 

Menopause causes a steep decline in estrogen production, which can lead to a steep decline in bone density. Combined with the natural bone loss experienced with age, this can quickly lead to osteoporosis. 

Eating disorders 

Our diets are directly responsible for much of our calcium intake, and low body weight and malnourishment caused by eating disorders can contribute greatly to bone loss — which in turn leads to osteoporosis. To make matters worse, eating disorders like anorexia and bulimia are vastly more common in women than men, which puts them at more risk. 

Bone structure 

Thin, petite women typically have thinner, more fragile bones. As mentioned above, aging naturally leads to some degree of bone loss. If the bones were thin and fragile in the first place, this bone loss can put you at risk of developing osteoporosis. 

Hysterectomies 

While a hysterectomy is sometimes necessary for your health, removal of the uterus can lead to a decrease in estrogen, which contributes to lost bone density. If you’ve had a hysterectomy, especially one where the ovaries were also removed, you should keep an eye on your bone health. 

Absent periods 

Absent periods, or amenorrhea, is common among female athletes, women with low body weight, and those suffering from hormonal imbalances. While we often consider our periods a burden, those who stop having them too early are at higher risk of developing osteoporosis than those with normal menstrual cycles.

Thyroid issues 

Women are more likely to experience thyroid disease than men, and an overactive thyroid can put you at risk for osteoporosis. 

How your OB/GYN can help 

As you can see, the odds are stacked against women when it comes to osteoporosis. Women typically have thinner frames, suffer from higher rates of eating disorders, and experience hormonal problems unique to their gender — all common risk factors for osteoporosis. 

This is why it’s important to get screened often, especially as you get older. Because osteoporosis is more common in women than men, many OB/GYNs provide screenings for their patients, especially those going through menopause. 

If you’re at risk for osteoporosis or already have the disease, your OB/GYN can help provide advice and treatment for managing and preventing it. 

Concerned about your bone health? Get in touch with the team at North Texas OB/GYN by calling 469-240-1866, or visit the contact page for more information. 

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