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Fractures - How They Can Be Prevented?

Dr. Senthil Kamalasekaran 90% (127 ratings)
MS - Orthopaedics, MBBS
Orthopedist, Chennai  •  22 years experience
Fractures - How They Can Be Prevented?

We have 207 bones in the body and breaking of any one of them can be extremely painful. Broken bones are called fractures and are most often a result of accidents. The risk of breaking a bone depends largely on your age and fractures are most commonly suffered by children and elderly people. There are many types of fractures. The most important amongst these are:

  1. Complete or incomplete fractures: This refers to the way a bone breaks. A complete fracture involves the breaking of a bone into two or more separate pieces while in an incomplete fracture, the bone does not break all the way through and may only be cracked.
  2. Compound fractures: Compound fractures are also known as open fractures. This refers to fractures where the bone tears through the skin.
  3. Simple fractures: Fractures where the bone does not tear through the skin are known as simple fractures. This can be further categorized as greenstick fractures, transverse fractures, oblique fractures and impacted fractures.

Severe pain is one of the most common symptoms of a fracture. Other symptoms include swelling or bruising over the bone area, loss of function and deformity. Any form of a fracture needs medical attention. In most cases, using a splint to reset and support the broken bones can help heal them. This process can be surgical or non-surgical depending on the extent of the fracture. In some cases a pin or metal plate may need to be implanted along with the bone to give them support while they heal.

Fractures can be easily prevented. In your home look out for things you could trip over or bang into. Keep all stairways clear of obstructions and do not use them when wet. Advise your children not to run in the house as tiles are slippery and they could fall and hurt themselves this way.

Follow general safety precautions like wearing a seatbelt while driving or wearing a helmet while riding a bike or bicycle. This can significantly reduce your chances of breaking a bone if caught in an automobile accident.

The weaker your bones, the easier they are to break. Eat food rich in calcium and vitamin D to build stronger bones. Milk and other dairy products are rich in calcium while the best way to get vitamin D is by exposing yourself to the early morning sunlight.

If you suffer from osteoporosis, exercise regularly to improve your balance and increase the strength of your bones and muscles. Your doctor may also prescribe medication for the same. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult an orthopedist.

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