8 Ways to Prevent a Bone Fracture

by HealthAfter50

Osteoporosis and bone fractures

Osteoporosis is often referred to as a silent disease, but sometimes there’s a clear sign that a person has the condition and is at increased risk for serious bone fractures in the future: a fragility fracture. This type of fracture occurs as a result of a fall from standing height or lower, such as a trip on a curb, that leads to a fractured hip or wrist. These relatively minor breaks affect up to one-half of women and one-third of men over age 50. However, there are steps you can take to help prevent fragility fractures.

1. Make a move

Do weight-bearing and resistance activities like walking, dancing, swimming, climbing stairs, or lifting weights to strengthen your bones.

2. Work on balance

Take up activities that will improve your balance, such as tai chi or yoga.

3. Opt for a bone-building diet

Consume foods rich in calcium and vitamin D, such as sardines, broccoli, and low-fat milk and yogurt.

4. Ditch bad habits

Avoid smoking and limit alcohol use.

5. Take note of medication side effects

Ask your doctor to review your medications to see whether any may cause dizziness or sleepiness, putting you at risk for falls.

6. Focus on eyesight

Make sure your eyeglass prescription is up to date. Impaired vision can increase the risk of falls.

7. Avoid fall dangers

Fall-proof your home by eliminating clutter and removing tripping hazards such as loose wires and throw rugs. Install handrails and place nonskid mats in the shower and tub.

8. Talk with your doctor about your risk

Ask your doctor for a bone density test so you can learn if you are at increased risk for fractures and take steps to reduce any risks.

Meet Our Writer

HealthAfter50 was published by the University of California, Berkeley, School of Public Health, providing up-to-date, evidence-based research and expert advice on the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of a wide range of health conditions affecting adults in middle age and beyond. It was previously part of Remedy Health Media's network of digital and print publications, which also include HealthCentral; HIV/AIDS resources The Body and The Body Pro; the UC Berkeley Wellness Letter; and the Berkeley Wellness website. All content from HA50 merged into Healthcentral.com in 2018.