Make no bones about it, World Osteoporosis Day on October 20, is the time to learn about osteoporosis. Celebrate good health and educate yourself and others about the value of taking care of your body and protecting your bones and muscles from disabling and life-threatening fractures.
History of World Osteoporosis Day
World Osteoporosis Day (WOD) is the annual highpoint of activities sponsored by the International Osteoporosis Foundation (IOF), which is deeply involved in educating the public about this devastating bone disease. Osteoporosis renders bones so frail and brittle that any slight action including even a sneeze or a fall can be life-threatening, causing never-ending pain and discomfort from entire bone breaks and fractures.
World Osteoporosis Day began in the United Kingdom. With support by the European Commission, World Osteoporosis Day became a project of the National Osteoporosis Society in the United Kingdom on October 20, 1996.
It’s interesting to note that prior to 1994, osteoporosis wasn’t even considered a major disease. But in 1998, two prominent organizations committed to educating the public about osteoporosis, combined to create the International Osteoporosis Foundation.
The founding of the IOF was a combination of the joint efforts of the European Foundation for Osteoporosis (EFFO) created in 1987 and the International Federation of Societies on Skeletal Diseases (IFSSD), which was initiated in 1995. By bringing both organizations together under a single umbrella, there was a better focus and a co-mingling of resources for the world’s scientists, doctors and other health advocacy organizations who were fighting osteoporosis.
By the late 90s, the UN’s World Health Organization (WHO) co-sponsored World Osteoporosis Day events with the IOF. Since that time, the IOF has taken over much of the leadership in sponsoring awareness-raising events all over the world.
One of the most important events for WOD is checking bone density. Bones that are less dense are more liable to easily break or fracture at sudden movement or during minor falls. These bone density tests are available on WOD all over the world. But there are events taking place globally that not only raise awareness but are all just plain fun! To find out more, log onto the IOF website.