Owners' Blog

Are Osteoporosis and Osteoarthritis The Same Condition?

By Greg and Hilary Eldridge

Senior Care in Sugar Hill GA

How knowledgeable are you concerning senior care? Many seniors believe that osteoporosis and osteoarthritis are the same condition. Although the names are very similar, the two conditions areSenior-Care-Sugar-Hill-GA actually very different, although some of the same symptoms are present. Learn how osteoporosis and osteoarthritis are similar, as well as how each condition differs.

Osteoarthritis Facts

According to Mayo Clinic, osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis and affects millions of people. One reason osteoarthritis is so prevalent among seniors is that it is caused by gradual wearing away of the protective cartilage found on the ends of bones. Over time, osteoarthritis becomes more advanced and there is currently no cure for the condition. Most commonly, osteoarthritis affects:

  • Hands
  • Knees
  • Hips
  • Spine

While symptoms of osteoarthritis can vary, as the disease can cause problems in various areas of the body, the most common symptoms include:

  • Pain in the joints that hurts when a person moves or stops an activity.
  • Joint stiffness upon waking each morning or after physical activity.
  • Tenderness in the joints when pressure is applied.
  • The feeling of bones rubbing on one another when moving.
  • Being unable to move a joint fully due to a loss of flexibility.
  • The development of bone spurs (extra pieces of bone around the joint).

Osteoporosis Facts

Osteoporosis, like osteoarthritis, also affects a person’s bones. However, osteoporosis is a disease that causes the bones to become frail, brittle and weak, explains Mayo Clinic. Many people are surprised to learn that osteoporosis can be so severe that something as mild as coughing can lead to a broken bone. A person’s bones are constructed of living tissues, meaning that the bones are constantly replenished and new bone matter is created. When this replenishment does not occur fast enough, osteoporosis occurs.

While anyone can develop osteoporosis, it most commonly affects:

  • Women past the age of menopause.
  • White and Asian women.
  • Areas of the body such as the hip, wrist and spine.

Symptoms of osteoporosis are not always apparent in the early stages of the disease. Over time, symptoms can include:

  • Pain in the vertebra that is caused by fracturing or collapsing (back or neck pain).
  • A loss of height that occurs over a period of time.
  • Appearing to be stooped over when sitting or standing.
  • Fracturing a bone very easily and without a great deal of force.

Knowing the difference between osteoporosis and osteoarthritis, as well as what areas of the body are affected by both diseases can help keep you or your loved one healthy and strong.

If you or an aging loved one are looking for senior care in Sugar Hill, GA, contact the caring staff at Home Helpers of Alpharetta. Call today (678) 430-8511.