How Do Arthritis or Osteoporosis Affect Dating?

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Dating after 50 can include dealing with the health issues of either or both partners. When you were younger and older people would mention aches and pains, it seemed somewhat irrelevant. Well, sadly, those aches and pains may now be relevant, and some of them may be degenerative.

Arthritis is often easy to spot by way of swollen fingers or enlarged knuckles. Can it be disabling? Yes, there are some vicious forms of it. But for the most part, degeneration to a painful and disabling extreme takes a very long time. It's also possible to reduce its effects by weight control, vitamin supplements, and exercise.

Osteoporosis is a decrease in bone density, and it can get so bad that bones are more likely to break. That isn't the worst of it; by itself it causes further aging of the body. Still, most people can live with all but the most severe cases and not be restricted in what they do. Some medications can slow the process, but in many people, it's a progressive disease that's most common after age 65.

If your date exercises and doesn't smoke, she can probably limit the disease. But people do get it who have a genetic predisposition to it, so it's not a person's “fault” if she has it. You can, however, help your partner live better with osteoporosis by engaging in healthy behaviors (such as exercising and taking in enough calcium) that help her reclaim all or a significant part of her ability to function.

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