Skip navigation

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

URL of this page: //

What's Your Osteoporosis Risk?

If you have good posture, you don't need to worry about osteoporosis.

The correct answer is myth. People with osteoporosis have weak bones that are more likely to break. Bone loss from osteoporosis can lead to a stooped posture. Bad posture can cause stooping, but it doesn't cause bone loss or osteoporosis. Discuss your risk factors for osteoporosis with your doctor even if your posture is perfect!

Half of women over age 50 will fracture a hip, wrist or vertebra.

The correct answer is true. Half of women over age 50 will fracture a hip, wrist, or vertebra during their lifetime. This is because many women lose a lot of bone as they get older. Finding osteoporosis early can help prevent bone breaks.

Going through menopause:

The correct answer is raises your risk of osteoporosis. During menopause, estrogen levels fall, and the body may not be able to create new bone fast enough to replace the old bone used by the body. If you have gone through menopause, ask your doctor about being tested for osteoporosis.

Men don't get osteoporosis.

The correct answer is myth. As men age, testosterone levels tend to fall. This can lead to bone loss starting at about age 70. Older men should talk with their doctor about being tested for osteoporosis.

Which group is most at risk for osteoporosis?

The correct answer is B and C. White women and Asian-American women are more likely to develop brittle bones than any other group. The risk is highest in women with a family history of osteoporosis. If the disease runs in your family, talk to your doctor about osteoporosis prevention and bone density testing.

Eating foods high in calcium can lower your osteoporosis risk.

The correct answer is fact. Your body needs calcium to build strong bones. Women ages 51 to 70 should have 1,200 mg of calcium a day. Men ages 51 to 70 and adults age 50 or younger should have 1,000 mg of calcium a day. In addition, everyone needs 400 to 800 IU of vitamin D daily to help the body absorb calcium.

Which exercise can lower your osteoporosis risk?

The correct answer is B and D. Weight-bearing exercises make your muscles pull on your bones. This makes bones stronger. Examples include tennis, walking, dancing, and weight-lifting. Protect your bones by doing weight-bearing exercises 3 or more days a week. Check with your doctor first if you haven't been active for awhile.

Drinking and smoking can increase your osteoporosis risk.

The correct answer is fact. Men and women who smoke have weaker bones. Women who smoke after menopause have an even higher chance of bone breaks. Heavy alcohol use can also damage the bones. Your doctor can help if you decide to quit smoking or cut back on alcohol.

Which health problem raises the risk of osteoporosis?

The correct answer is all of the above. Any health problem that makes it hard to exercise or keeps the body from absorbing calcium or vitamin D can lead to weak bones. Some medicines, including steroids and anti-seizure drugs, can also cause osteoporosis.

You're more likely to get osteoporosis if you're overweight.

The correct answer is myth. In fact, people who are underweight are more likely to get osteoporosis. Younger woman who do not have menstrual periods for a long time also have a higher risk of bone loss.

Bone density testing can spot osteoporosis before it causes symptoms.

The correct answer is fact. Bone density testing is a painless scan that measures how much calcium and other minerals are in a section of bone. Women over 65 and men over 70 should consider having this test. Ask your doctor about starting earlier if you have any of the risk factors discussed in this quiz.

Related MedlinePlus Health Topics