Osteoporosis Resource Center

Your Spine | Your Quality of Life

How do you gauge the term “Quality of Life”?

Generally, we associate a number of conditions with our life metric such as physical Health, Psychological Health, Level of Independence, Social Relations, Environmental Factors, and Beliefs. Most people have variations but for the most part, we fit into one of these categories.

Now if we look at how Osteoporosis and Osteopenia affects our life, we can look at conditions that fit into the above mentioned.

Pain, Sciatica, backache

Pain is significant in determining a persons quality of life. Osteoporosis can be devastating in causing painful fractures. When the spine, hips, and legs, suffer breaks, happiness can be hampered and there is the potential of Depression setting in. Pain cuts short the amount of necessary quality sleep, pain can create negative feelings that can alter our perceptions and peoples perceptions of the sufferer. Pain destroys independence and a person’s social well-being, affecting the sufferer’s ability to interact and communicate in a normal day to day environment. Pain limits access to the environment and challenge our belief systems. Simply put, pain has significant potential to destroy the quality of life.

Perception of our Body Image can have a significant effect on our psyche.  Those who have lost body height and/or normal posture, may look in the mirror and feel bad about there body and how they may appear to others. Your physical appearance affects how you feel about yourself and your self-esteem. The support structure supplied by the bones can be severely disrupted by osteoporosis; thus, your “perception of (your) position in life” can be compromised. This can lead to a degenerative psychological state of mind, taking the sufferer on a downward spiral into debilitating territory.

Doctor, elderly woman examining skelton

Mobility is another crucial quality-of-life determinant that suffers from osteoporosis. Bone fractures limit mobility, but so can fear. One may tend to avoid activities due to a fear of fractures. These activities might be as simple as daily bathing, cooking, or even grocery shopping. Other more active activities might also include sexual activities and relations. The inability to enhance our gregarious behavior can also have a negative effect on how we feel about ourselves.  How about social activities? Because we lead active lives, mobility is crucial to our happiness. Being an active individual, however simple that may be, is crucial to our well being.

Freedom within your environment helps to determine a quality of life. Going up and down stairs in your home can be difficult and painful with this condition.  A person is at risk of falling and easily breaking bones. Then one is faced with the challenge of navigating stairs with broken bones. The results can be fatal. Other activities that may restrict or be painful to participate in can be driving a car, walking in a hilly neighborhood, walking to the bus stop and taking a bus, sporting activities. Osteoporosis can dramatically limit your freedom to live happily.

Osteoporosis has great potential to penetrate your life in negative ways. This negativity erodes the way you feel about yourself and your life.  The simple life tasks, activities, feelings, we take for granted can suffer leading to a destruction of a basic, simple life that allows us to feel happy and satisfied.

Medical Professionals such as Physiotherapists, Chiropractors, Physicians and Orthopaedic Doctors may assist you with good choices and therapies.

Exercise has been a proven factor, providing improved balance and mobility and thereby enhancing an individual’s freedom.

Medications can improve quality of life via pain abatement.

Foods, Vitamins, and Minerals play a key role in the health of our bone structure. Vitamins A, B, D, K, minerals, Zinc, Magnesium as well as antioxidants are helpful in keeping bones and connective tissue strong.

With a better understanding of the way osteoporosis changes your life, you too might be able to find solutions to improve your QOL.