Bones play an important role in our bodies. And as we age, protecting and maintaining our bone health is essential.

At TRIA Orthopedics, I help patients improve their bone health after they’ve broken their wrist, hip, spine or pelvis. All of the patients I see are at least 50, but more and more it’s the patients in their 60s and 70s who have broken these bones from a simple fall. That’s why I also work with patients on strategies they can use to avoid falls. My philosophy is no person is “too old” to be treated.

Each year, up to half of all women and a quarter of all men over age 50 will break a bone from falling. And even just one broken bone makes them much more likely to experience another. Alarming statistics also show that breaking a second bone can be deadly. So it’s my goal to help my patients successfully prevent any and all future fractures.

When someone falls from standing height or less and breaks a bone, it’s known as a fragility fracture. These fractures are common complications of osteoporosis. And when they happen, it’s often the first sign that a person has the disease.

How to protect your bones

Here are some tips I share with my patients:

  • Get enough calcium and Vitamin D. Both vitamins are essential to building strong, dense bones when you are young and keeping them strong and healthy as you age.
  • Eat a well-balanced diet including foods that are good for bone health.
  • Exercise regulary and work on maintaining balance.
  • Avoid smoking.
  • Limit alcohol to two drinks or fewer per day.
  • Take steps to prevent falls and learn fall prevention tips for aging adults.

Methodist Hospital and Regions Hospital are using The American Orthopaedic Association’s Own the Bone® program to help older patients get the care they deserve. This program shows hospitals and clinics how to provide the most complete care possible when it comes to fragility fractures. And we’re proud to say that both Regions and Methodist have been recognized as 2022 Star Performers in the program. This recognition is given to health care institutions that achieve at least 5 of Own the Bone’s 10 prevention measures for 75 percent of their patients or more.

Learn more about HealthPartners and Park Nicollet senior health care.