We’re going to discuss several things that your doctor may tell you to do if you have osteoporosis. I don’t agree with all of these suggestions, but for the most part, they seem sensible. While I do not share all of these opinions, I believe that it is best to err on the side of caution and follow the doctor’s orders. Today, we’re going to talk about three things you should never do if…well, you have osteoporosis. That sounded really dramatic, so I’m sorry to say that it does not really matter that much what exactly “never” means. Our bones begin to naturally break down with age, but that’s a very slow process. There are steps you can take to protect your spine from undue damage and more importantly lessen the risk of fractures.
Uh-oh. Osteoporosis is a condition that affects the bones. This may not affect all people, but for women after menopause, it is very common and can lead to bone fragility or brittle bones. Brittle bones are likely to break with certain movements, such as running or jumping, causing compression fractures that can take weeks to heal. Bone mineral density (BMD) is a measure of bone mass. Okay, so let’s talk about number one: Your bones are not strong enough to protect your spine and other body parts from injuries. With osteoporosis, people most often develop the condition in their 60s or 70s. It can lead to broken bones and even cause permanent damage.
Learn more about how to stay in the right place when you perform a squat. Stay in your right position to stay safe and avoid injury. Compression fractures can happen when you go too far forward during a squat, and it’s usually due to not reaching your right shoulder height. The muscles around the spine contract against each other, compressing the vertebrae, making it easier for them to be damaged by heavy lifting loads.
Or two, if you lift something heavy and your back is in that rounded out position, You could develop a compression fracture just from that move. So if you’re going to lift something heavy one, you may want to rethink it, but two, you want to make sure you’re in really good posture. So everything’s all lined up.
So we’re going to explain in a second here why this bending forward like this can cause the compression fracture. Another common one is when they sit down if they fall into the chair–oh sure–in older people, it’s relatively common. They’ll kind of plop into the chair, and that can put some compression.–Yeah, they’re in that rounded out spot, this is what happens, And a lot of times, the compression fractures happen right here where we call the hinge. Sure–and it’s on the thoracic area here where they- T11, T12 That’s where we often see it, so let’s go ahead. Let’s say that’s T11 and T12 right there; that’s thoracic 11 and thoracic 12, the mid-back. So actually, we could have T 10, 11, and 12, so we got three vertebrae here, and we’re going to show you what happens When you go ahead and round out the back. You have weight on there now. yep, That’s what can happen.
The bone can compress down, so that’s that rounding forward, And then you sit down. You plop or just because the osteoporosis means that the vertebra is weak. It doesn’t have integrity, and it’s not going to accept this kind of force. They crush, And sometimes they inject cement in there now. they try to rebuild it up again, but it’s- You know once it’s done, it’s done. It’s not going to expand back out like our cushion here. It just has to heal the way it is. They could take, you know, months. Many people are pretty uncomfortable for months; usually, a few weeks, they’re getting better, But then we’re working at not bending forward, not plopping because that re-injures it and reaggrevates it. Yeah, so when we have somebody with a compression fracture, we avoid any bending forward at all. We might even do a little bit of bending back, But you know, with osteoporosis in general, posture is very, very important.
Alright, the second one is going to be obvious to everyone. I apologize for including it, but there are things to help prevent this from happening. I thought we’d go over some of those–sure–so the second thing is you got to try to avoid falling. I mean, you’ve gotta, more than anybody else. If you have-if, you’re one of those proud people who say, hey, I’m not going to use a cane or not use a walker. Well, you know the saying. Pride happens before the fall, and you know I see people all the time that should be using a walker should be using a cane. They’re not because you know they say I’m not old, and then they fall, and they really start acting old because now you’re dealing with pain, And you can’t walk and stuff like that–right. So we’re going to show you the next step.
We’re going to explain to you some exercises you should do which actually help prevent you from falling, and that is the third thing that you should never do. You should never not exercise. Right–I think a lot of times people start getting older, and they think I don’t want to exercise because you know I might hurt my back or I might hurt the legs. But your bone responds to exercise, and it actually becomes a little thick, and it’s called Wolff’s Law. You caught me off guard; I was thinking about some exercises and when you exercise. We’re going to show you how to exercise properly because sometimes people exercise and put their back in that compromised position. Posture is so important with osteoporosis. In fact, Let’s talk about how to help prevent falls. Let’s show a couple exercises and we’ll show some posture exercises too.–Sure okay.
So the first one, Which is a great one to do, is just a sit to stand because what that does is it’s getting weight through your legs and even strengthening. It helps increase bone density, too. What we’d like you to do is to go ahead. You know when you’re sitting in the chair, And that’s why we’re not big fans of those lift chairs. By the way, Unless you absolutely have to have them because if you have the chair lifting up for you all day, you’re losing your strength. You’re losing your density of the bone. So all you’re going to do is you scoot to the edge here.
You’re going to go ahead and use the arms if you need to to start off with, and I want you to do some repeated sit to stands. Now the whole thing you got to remember about this if you’re having trouble getting out of a chair, your nose has got to get over your toes. I mean, if you try to stand straight up, you might plop backward, and then you’ve got that problem with your back. The other thing I want you to keep in mind is to try to keep good posture. Don’t be rounded out like this and getting up. Keep straight up; just lead with the chest a little bit is what you’ll want to do. And you can go ahead, and you know every time you get out of a chair if you don’t want to exercise. You know, pick a time of day to exercise every time you get out of a chair. You can do five sit-to-stands before you get out your chair and people start to talk about you–right, You say I’ve been reading, and this is what they say, you’ll be okay then.
I’ve been watching that guy, and every time he tries to get out of a chair, he takes five tries, and it’s like no, he’s not taking five tries. He’s just getting strengthening. So that one really helps the hip extensors, Which really helps you with your balance, the other one that really helps you with your balance are the hip abductors. That’s the muscle that goes out to the side.
So usually it’s nice to go in the back of a solid chair you got something to balance–or a countertop Yep, and we’re just going to simply do this. Notice I’m not doing this. Keep tall good shoulders back. Focus on everything that’s right with posture working that hip right there. These hip muscles are crucial for your stability with walking just to keep your gait solid, which will help you–and look how he’s got good posture. He’s trying to keep a tall posture. All right, next one, I’m going to show a couple of stretches. One is when you’re just in your chair; you want to go ahead, and Again, it’s about the posture. Hate to keep coming back to it. You’re going to want to make sure because what happens quite often is your chest it gets tight and starts pulling you.
You’re going to round out, so you’re going to be more susceptible to that number one injury where you know you lift stuff. You’re in this bad posture, so you want to chest. I was going to say chest your stretch, Stretch your chest so you can do it in several ways One, you can bring your arms back, or you can put your arms behind your head and bring your elbows back. That’s stretching your chest another way is just to put your arms behind you, and this stretches your chest, But another stretch you can do for your back and your chest is to go ahead and use a ball like this–get a soft one A nice soft squishy one–yeah, you can get it like you can steal it from one of the little neighborhood children and You’ll get a reputation then. Well, give it back to them after you’re done. Well, when they kick it in your yard, it’s yours, right? Well, of course.–
Okay, so you can just bend over, and what’s nice about this? You’re stretching the chest. Still, you’re also stretching the mid-back at that spot that tends to be vulnerable, And if you’ve got shoulder problems where this is uncomfortable, you can do it with your hands down Yeah, you can go like this even. I like the ball because you can move it up and down. It can go into different spots, So it works out really well that way. All right, a couple more stretches, how about one in bed?
The hamstring stretch, I think, is always a good one to do. Otherwise, it’s going to be pulling on your back. All you have to do is you can bring your leg up like this, bring it forward and then Stretch your leg up like this–yep, And this is nice because you’re taking the stress off the back if you try to do some of these hamstring stretches in a chair Oftentimes they promote flex posture and put pressure on your spine where this doesn’t–and I’d like, the next one I like to do is to actually just get a little nutrition into the back And some movement in the back, so when you get up We’re just going to do some twisties we call them, or you call them windshield wipers.
Yeah, because it reminds me of the old windshield wiper, so we’re going back and forth like this, And it just loosens up the back gets it ready, and then the final one You know when you get off the edge of the bed, or you can do this in a chair I want you just to put one leg off the edge like this. On the end of it and the other one bring it back like this. You’re stretching that hip flexor right there, So he’s getting that leg to come back.
You’ll feel right where that front pocket is, hopefully. These should all just feel like stretches; they should not create any sharp pain. If they do, you need Not to do them. Avoid them.–Yeah, the reason we really like stretching the hip flexors Is that muscle will pull down on your back and pull you in that rounded out position. So you know, hey everybody out there, be safe. We don’t want to see you, you know, coming into our clinic with a compression fracture. Did we mention anything about posture, how important it is? Just wondering.–Nag nag nag. It’s all we do.