Risk Factors

Who is affected by osteoporosis? Osteoporosis is common in Australia. Women and men can be affected, with up to 25% of cases in men. People 50 years and over are mostly at risk however osteoporosis can occur in younger people, depending on risk factors.

Protect your bones. Know your risk and talk to your doctor if you have risk factors.

Early investigation of risk factors can prevent osteoporosis.

Diagnosed osteoporosis can be managed and treated to reduce risk of breaking a bone.

Common Risk Factors

Family history

Poor bone health can be heredity. Check if anyone in your family (particularly parents or siblings) have ever been diagnosed with osteoporosis. This includes parents or siblings who have experienced a broken bone (from a minor fall) or rapidly lost height, as this can indicate being at risk of osteoporosis.

Calcium and vitamin D

Low calcium intake: Adults require 1,000 mg per day (preferably through diet) increasing to 1,300 mg per day for women over 50 and men over 70 years.

Low vitamin D levels: Vitamin D is needed to absorb calcium. Lack of sun exposure can lead to low vitamin D levels. People at risk of vitamin D deficiency should be investigated.

Medical history

Conditions and medications which can impact bone health:

Lifestyle factors

  • Low levels of physical activity
  • Smoking
  • Excessive alcohol intake

Body build and weight

  • Thin body build can increase your risk
  • Obesity, studies suggest hormone changes associated with obesity can impact bones

Check your bone health now!”

Self-assess your risk online with Know Your Bones developed by Healthy Bones Australia in partnership with the Garvan Institute of Medical Research.