Home and Away star Sophie Dillman has spoken candidly about living with endometriosis and how she feared it would impact her job.
Endometriosis is a long-term condition where tissue similar to the lining of the womb grows elsewhere in the body, most commonly the ovaries and fallopian tubes, but also the bladder and intestines.
The Ziggy Astoni actress was diagnosed with endometriosis ten years ago, undergoing numerous surgeries since. She experiences symptoms such as painful periods, leading to vomiting spells and fainting, and a swollen stomach, which can make her look bloated.
Dillman recently explained she was worried the she would be fired from the Aussie soap due to the condition before learning how much cast and crew supported her.
"When it first started happening I was freaking out because, not that Home and Away has ever put any pressure on anyone to look a certain way body image-wise, and they feel really strongly about that – but you put pressure on yourself," she told Yahoo Lifestyle.
"I was petrified that I was going to lose my job because I couldn't stick to a beauty ideal, and I struggled to fit that beauty ideal at the best of times, let alone when I'm swollen."
However, the crew of Home and Away helped Dillman deal with the condition and found ways to put her at ease on set.
"They're fantastic. I'm allowed to wear a towel whenever I feel uncomfortable. Or they'll change the way that the scene works, so I don't have to be in a bikini," the actress explained.
"That just makes it that little bit easier to go on set and do your job when you're in pain and you're self-conscious."
Home and Away airs weekdays at 1.45pm on Channel 5 and 6pm on 5STAR. First-look screenings air at 6.30pm on 5STAR and the show also streams on My5. In Australia, the show airs Mondays to Thursdays at 7pm on Channel 7 and streams on 7plus. Selected classic episodes are available via Amazon Prime Video in the UK.
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