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Pioneer Memorial Hospital & Health Services is recognizing that May is National Osteoporosis Month

Apr 26, 2019 08:53PM ● By MED Magazine

May is National Osteoporosis Month, and Pioneer Memorial Hospital & Health Services is encouraging everyone to get active, follow a bone healthy diet and learn the facts about osteoporosis treatment to prevent fractures and the pain and suffering that results. 

Osteoporosis is a disease of the bone that makes a person’s bones weak and more likely to break.  Approximately 10 million Americans have osteoporosis and another 44 million have low bone density, placing them at increased risk.  54 million Americans, half of all adults age 50 and older, are at risk of breaking a bone and should be concerned about bone health.  

Osteoporosis is preventable.  About 85-90% of adult bone mass is acquired by age 18 in girls and age 20 in boys; and building strong bones during childhood and adolescence can help prevent osteoporosis later in life.  Following some simple steps will go a long way toward protecting against osteoporosis and broken bones:

• Get to know your risk factors.  Many factors play a role in your risk for osteoporosis, including age, gender, lifestyle, medical history, family history and whether you take any medication or have medical conditions that can lead to bone loss.
• Get active.  Doing regular weight-bearing and muscle-strengthening exercise is one of the best ways to protect against osteoporosis and broken bones.
• Eat your way to healthy bones.  Calcium, vitamin D, lean protein, fruits, vegetables, and healthy fats are the key to eating for healthy bones.  Identify nutrients that are important to bone health and find foods at grocery stores that contain ingredients that promote bone health.
• Ask your healthcare provider when you should get a bone density test.  The painless, 10-minute test will help predict your risk of breaking a bone.
• Don’t smoke and don’t drink too much alcohol.  No more than two drinks a day is best for bone health.  

Since you can’t feel your bones getting weaker, many people don’t realize they have osteoporosis until they break a bone. One in two women and up to one in four men will break a bone due to osteoporosis in their lifetime. For women, the incidence of osteoporosis is greater than that of heart attack, stroke and breast cancer combined.  While the statistics are grim, there is a lot you can do to protect your bones throughout your life.

Pioneer Memorial’s Kayla Nielsen, Certified Nurse Practitioner and Certified Clinical Densitometrist (CCD), encourages people “to discuss with their provider their risk and screening recommendations.”

Don’t assume osteoporosis won’t affect you.  Pioneer Memorial offers Dual Energy X-Ray Absorptiometry (DEXA) scan services that can detect bone changes as small as 1%. Take time this month to schedule an appointment with one of our providers to discuss your risks and screening recommendations by calling (605) 326-5201.  For more information, visit our website at

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