Ending endometriosis with Jessica Taylor
Endometriosis Association (QENDO) president Jessica Taylor talks to Your shout about the invisible disease that affects more than 200,000 Australian women.
Despite affecting the same number of people as asthma and diabetes – one in 10 – Jessica believes endometriosis is ignored by the wider medical community.
“We talk about those diseases (asthma and diabetes) so effortlessly and fluidly and I think there’s been this idea of – putting women’s health under the carpet,” Jessica said.
“But now we need to talk about it, we need to elevate and highlight what we’re going through.”
Jessica is part of a new generation who are encouraging women to speak out about endometriosis and break the stigma around discussing women’s health.
“We have this new generation that is saying ‘I’ve had enough and I’m not going to deal with what I go through with endometriosis – I ’m going to start talking about it’,” she said.
QENDO not only supports and aids women with endometriosis but anyone affected by the disease.
“We support anyone affected by endometriosis and we know it absolutely affects the women, but it also affects their families and their employers,” Jessica said.
“It affects doctors, it affects everybody in the general community and we have really pushed that through the whole three decades that we’ve been up and running.”
The fight to end endometriosis is a personal one for Jessica, who thought the debilitating pain she experienced each month was normal until a doctor finally recognised her symptoms.
Through QENDO she has been able to manage the disease, however she stresses that there is no cure for endometriosis and coping techniques are different for everyone.
“There is no cure, but it can be managed – the key is to find the right care and the right people that are managing you and that’s a big thing we do at QENDO,” Jessica said.
“It’s truly remarkable how we have improved other people’s lives, it’s like no other service.”
Her advice to women suffering pain is to know what is normal.
“What we say to women is if you’re unable to manage pain – so your period pain isn’t normal –n with just a simple heat pack, ibuprofen and a Panadol, if you’re not able to do those simple tasks, that warrants investigation.”
Hear more from Jessica below.