Osteoporosis, meaning “porous bones,” causes the bones to become weak or brittle. The decrease in estrogen after menopause puts women at a higher risk for the condition than men, especially as they age.

Many women lose up to 10 to 20 percent of their bone mass in the years surrounding menopause. And by age 70, bone mass typically decreases by 30 to 40 percent.

All women should have a bone mineral density test by age 65, even if they have certain risk factors.

A bone density score of -2.5 or lower indicates osteoporosis. While the condition has no cure, medications can help slow the breakdown of bones.

Even though you have a diagnosis, you can still take steps to improve your bone health and prevent falls that could lead to a broken bone.

Self-care can help support your treatment and help you feel better. This may include:

  • cooking with balance and nutrition
  • Making time for the things you enjoy.
  • Exercising safely and regularly.
  • Reducing stress through meditation is possible.
  • A support group.

Self-care is very individualized and it may look different from one person to the next. Trying different strategies can help you develop a self-care regimen that fits in to your osteoporosis treatment plan.

Do you know how well your self-care plan is working for you? If you need to bone up, take this lifestyle assessment to see if you are on top of your osteoporosis self-care game.