Wondering how to read your Dexa scan results? It can be confusing if you don’t know how to analyze the results. Also, if your physician doesn’t review them in depth, the results can be much better than you think.
In this article, we are going to explain what the numbers mean, where you should be based on others you gender and age, and how to analyze your improvements.
What are normal T-scores?
The numbers you are evaluating are the t-scores. Each region of your body receives a T-score on your dexa scan, and these numbers are always really small. They can be positive or negative, and don’t worry, negative it completely normal.
Normal bone density is any T-score that is -1 or greater. That’s right, you can have a negative T-score and you are considered normal, so don’t sweat seeing a negative number.
Any T-score from -1 to -2.5 is considered osteopenia. A T-score of -2.5 or less is osteoporosis.
As you can see, small changes have very different diagnoses. Going from -0.05 to -2.5 would mean you went from normal bone density to osteoporosis.
What change in T-scores should I expect?
Now that we know what the numbers mean, let’s look at what kind of change you can expect. The first thing to keep in mind is that both males and females over the age of thirty are all losing bone density at about 2-3% per year.
So if we are all losing out bone density every year, that means that unless you are taking necessary steps to maintain your current bone density (i.e. osteogenic loading) then you can typically expect to see your T-score get worse each year.
Now a 2-3% change is small, so you won’t go from a -0.5 to a -1.5. In fact, let’s look at what a 2-3% change might look like.
If you had a -0.5 T-score, a 3% loss would result in a T-score of -0.515. Not really noticeable, right? Even that continued for five years, you would end up with a -0.585 T-score.
What is a good change in T-scores?
Since we know what kind of change you can expect, let’s look at what would be a good (or even great) change in T-scores. We know that small changes make a big difference, and we also know that if your bone density doesn’t get worse, that is by default a gain because you are supposed to lose bone density.
That is the first sign of a good change in T-scores—no change from your previous scan. That means you maintained your bone density and didn’t lose any. So right away, that is a 3% gain over what you are expected to lose.
Now let’s look at a gain like what we have seen with some of our members.
Suppose you had a -2.5, which would be osteoporosis, and your next scan is a -1.9. Still a negative number and not a huge change at first glance, but let’s do the math.
Going from -2.5 to -1.9 is a 24% improvement in T-scores!
That’s right, one of our members saw a 24% improvement in her T-scores and she’s not alone. We have several members who have achieved similar results. What an incredible improvement when you consider that “normal” T-scores decline every year.
How can I improve my T-score?
The only way to improve your T-score is to increase your bone density. OsteoStrong is the world’s leading osteogenic loading program that allows its members to achieve the necessary level of impact emulation that triggers natural bone growth.
In as little as 10-minutes each week, our members are able to load the necessary force required for a minimum dose-response in each region of their bodies.
Keep in mind, your bones take a long time to remodel, so this isn’t something you can work on days before your next Dexa scan. You need to start now and be consistent in your efforts. Also, the outcome is completely dependent on the effort you put in. It is important that you hit your triggers regularly if you want to achieve your goals.