6 Life Hacks for Enjoying Your Golden Years When You Have Osteoporosis

Medically reviewed by William Morrison, MD on January 25, 2017Written by Mary Baucom
osteoporosis

You’ve led a full, active life — and having postmenopausal osteoporosis shouldn’t stop you in your tracks. With a few adjustments, you can continue to live a life that you enjoy while being mindful of your condition too.

Check out this roundup of six tips and tricks, and know that getting help and support is really only a step away.

1. Sign up for home delivery services

In today’s “on demand” world, getting the practical, everyday items you need is easier than ever. Large retailers and grocery store chains can deliver goods to you the exact same day — often for free.

This ordering and delivery service is not only easy, but also efficient for those who may be limited by their mobility due to osteoporosis. (And who doesn’t love taking the hassle out of running countless errands!)

Some retailers even have a “subscribe and save” option so you can have the same item delivered to you on a regular basis. This is great for toiletries and household items, such as shampoo, body wash, laundry detergent, and toilet paper.

2. Install handrails in the hallway and bathroom

One of the biggest concerns for someone with postmenopausal osteoporosis is falling. Even a minor trip can cause a bone fracture, sprain, or break. Make sure your home is safe by installing secure, full-length handrails in the highest traffic areas. These may include an entryway or a mudroom where you put on and take off your shoes, or a staircase that only has a rail on one side. This safety precaution can also provide peace of mind to your extended family, who may not live close by.

The bathroom is another space that you’ll want to address. Wet floors, along with fluffy, dampened mats, are risky for anyone with osteoporosis. Grab bars are an option for showers, while handrails placed on the walls surrounding your toilet might be useful.

3. Let someone do your housecleaning for you

You’ve likely done your fair share of cleaning. But sometimes, it’s best to let the professionals handle the dirty work for you.

Getting out and moving a heavy, awkward vacuum cleaner is difficult — and frustrating — to anyone. But this can be hazardous to those with postmenopausal osteoporosis. Chores that require you to get on your hands and knees, such as scrubbing floors, sterilizing your shower, or dusting floorboards, should be avoid at all costs. Keep your feet on the ground: Don’t attempt to get on stepstools or ladders, or worse, stand on chairs.

Once you’ve found a professional cleaning company or individual that you’re comfortable with, see if they offer discounts for bundling services or for signing up for regular cleanings. Saving both time and money is always beneficial.

4. Use a stable stool or bench when cooking

If you consider cooking to be one of your favorite activities, it’s important to set your kitchen up for success. Purchase a flat, wooden bench or stool that’s specifically for cooking. Add nonslip grip pads under the feet, especially if your kitchen has wooden or tile floors.

Make sure the bench is something that’s comfortable to sit on and works for the height of your kitchen countertop. Don’t put any ornamental pillows on the bench, as these will only make it more likely for you to slip and fall.

As an added bonus, having a bench in your kitchen is another opportunity for you to cook alongside your loved ones. What grandmother doesn’t love sharing their treasured mac and cheese recipe with their grandkids, right?

5. Set up your own gym in your living room

How often do you go the entire morning reading the newspaper and not leaving your kitchen table or couch? While you may think that a sedentary lifestyle is safe, it’s not necessarily the healthiest option. Getting up to move or stretch is an important part of building and maintaining strong bones.

You don’t need to leave your house to get exercise. Resistance bands and small weights are easy to use and a great way for you to increase your upper body strength. A yoga mat is another great investment, and can make the practice more enjoyable. Best of all, these items can be stored away in your living room, making your “gym” a very accessible destination.

If you’re unsure about purchasing exercise equipment, ask a friend to go to the store with you. You can also ask your physical therapist or doctor for recommendations on what brands of equipment they recommend.

6. Grow some lavender

There’s more to lavender than just a pretty purple flower! This plant and its oil have been used for medicinal purpose for hundreds of years. Research has shown that inhaling the fresh scent can help boost your mood and produce a feeling of ease and relaxation. Because of this, lavender is a well-known sleeping aid.

Lavender also has some anti-inflammatory properties, which can be especially good for those with postmenopausal osteoporosis. Purchase a small lavender plant at your local garden center, or buy some dried lavender and display it in an attractive container or bottle instead.

Lavender essential oils can also produce a calming effect, especially after soaking in a warm bath.

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