Thanks to advances in modern science and healthcare, ways of learning how to live with osteoporosis have increased and improved. Although there is no cure as of yet, there are a number of lifestyle changes which help to relieve the symptoms and alleviate the pain. The elderly may face additional challenges when incorporating some of these coping mechanisms into their everyday life, however, with enough care and assistance it becomes a lot easier. Here are some tips from our team at CareMalta; a leader in providing care for the elderly in Malta.
Fall and Accident Prevention
One of the effects of osteoporosis is that bones take much longer to heal, and even then they may only be partially repaired. Shoes with soles of a non-slip material may help to prevent trips and falls, while the use of walking sticks or Zimmer frames aid balance and mobility. Hip protectors can prevent fractures in case of an accident, and having one’s eyesight checked on a frequent basis to avoid bumping into things and tripping over objects is also important.
Exercise and Physical Activity
In order to retain strength and improve resilience, bones and muscles need exercise no matter the age. Cardiovascular activity such as walking or cycling is recommended for the elderly; these exercises cause muscles in the body to contract thereby applying more force to the bone. This causes the body to produce a denser matrix which is able to withstand heavier duress.
Techniques for Coping with Pain
• Gentle massages
• Heat treatment such as warm baths or hot water bottles
• Pain medication
• Cold treatment with cold packs or ice
Proper Intake of Calcium and Vitamin D
Fortunately for our elderly residents who live in a retirement home in Malta, getting enough sunlight (and hence, plenty of Vitamin D) has never been difficult on this sunny and warm island. Spending a bit of time outdoors every day in good weather is very healthy for the bones. Getting adequate amounts of calcium is also essential. This can be in the form of supplements or food sources such as dairy products, green vegetables or even a single tablespoon of non-fat powdered milk with coffee or tea, which contains about 50mg of calcium.
If you have someone in the family with osteoporosis who needs the right care and attention, you might be considering a retirement home in Malta. Contact us at CareMalta for more information about our services and to find out how we can help.
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