My name is Bayani, and I have a fat neck.

Now, I should start with correcting the title, that is – my name is Bayani, but –  I don’t have a fat neck – or at least if I do, I’m hiding it well. For years I have been dealing with the pillow-suffocating, shin-kicking, and shouting of my girlfriend who has put with my Obstructive Sleep Apnoea – oddly enough, for the same amount of time (could be correlation); and while I did some research some years ago in to fixing it, I never actually followed through with it.

Not a fat neck, so I think.

Previous pseudo-attempts at fixing the problem included some haphazard exercise that happen to come my way – you know, walking, getting up in the morning, that sort of thing.

Late last year however I signed up at a local, 24-hour gym – Anytime Fitness – and like anything you’re SUPPOSED to do, I did it frequently at the start, but other things got in the way, and to date this year, I’ve got no more than 5 times. I work that out to be about $50 a visit.

So tonight I had another shot and asked the Twitterverse for an answer. Almost immediately I got responses, including spam, and while the information wasn’t necessarily new, it was sobering – I have a fat neck. Again, I don’t – but that was the most brutal way I could put it to myself, which was still slightly true.

Sleep Apnoea?

Sleep Apnoea is characterized by abnormal pauses in breathing or instances of abnormally low breathing, during sleep. Low breathing is called a hypopnea, and Pauses are called an apnoea and can last from a few seconds to minutes, and may occur from 5 to upwards of 30 times an hour.

Personally, I also eventually choke on my saliva and wake up coughing – well, I sort of wake up. I’ve grown so used to it that I barely remember the event; but it certainly interrupts a good nights’ sleep – or a days’ sleep, in my case.

What’re my options?

Gym.

Gym.

Gym.

Failing that, some form of dental splint or surgery, but – I will look at those options with a Doctor when the time comes.

What are the bullshit options?

Chiropractic – not a doctor.

Homeopathy – not a doctor.

Acupuncture – not a doctor.

Hypnotherapy – not a doctor.

Sure, if there was evidence that any of the above was effective, I might be inclined to give it a shot – but all robust investigation in to the above show that they work no better than placebo. What’s a placebo? Essentially, a replacement therapy deemed to be as useful as doing nothing.

What’s it going to be?

The only real non-invasive way I am going to be able to tackle this is through exercise – I’m still going to resolve to getting some more advice from my GP, but if I want to sleep easier (and have less sore shins in the morning) I am going to need to get to the gym more often.
The staple. The fancy version.

While a quick-fix is a favorable option, I should really be doing  exercise, given the amount of junk I eat on a regular basis.

My diets’ a worry, but I know it’s going to have to be something I change over time, rather than over night.

So, baby steps.

I’ve swapped the cans of V with Sugar-free V (What’s an Energy Drink with no Sugar?), I get small Cheeseburger Meals from McDonalds, rather than the Medium Quarter Pounder Meals I used to get, and well, I can’t give up the girlfriends’ cupcakes.

That’s just silly.

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