Strictly's Amy Dowden has 'accepted' chronic illness but fears it will stop her dancing

Strictly's Amy Dowden has 'accepted' chronic illness but fears it will stop her dancing

Strictly professional Amy Dowden has said she's now "accepted" having Crohn's and is "on top" of her symptoms as much as she possibly can be.

It comes after the 31-year-old previously revealed that she "lives in fear" of the disease taking away her dancing.

The chronic illness causes inflammation of the lining of the digestive system and she has said that doing Strictly has got her through some "dark times".

Appearing on Lorraine, she spoke to guest host Christine Lampard about her BBC documentary, which highlighted how she had grappled with the condition over the years.

"I wanted to highlight the truth of Crohn's," she said. "I didn't want to make in glamorous in any way."

Amy continued: "I don't think many people celebrate a chronic illness being diagnosed, but I thought finally I can get the medication I need."

Speaking about day-to-day living with the condition, she said: "I've accepted it now, I'm on top of my symptoms as much as I can now.

"I want to be known as Amy the dancer."

"I feel like I can just be me now, I don't need to hide it," she said. "I have so many people I can turn to and talk to."

Opening up about the new series of Strictly, Amy said: "I fall in Strictly even more each year. I'm incredibly blessed to work wth the most incredible people."

 When asked whether it would be "returning to normal" in light of the relaxed coronavirus restrictions, she said: "Fingers crossed!"

Amy previously opened up about how Strictly has been "more than a dance show" to her through the years.

She first appeared on Strictly since 2017, when she was paired with comedian Brian Conley, and was a runner-up with partner Karim Zeroual last year.

"Strictly has been more than a dance show to me, it got me through the darkest times of my illness," she said. "For me it was a big inspiration to keep me dancing.

"Dancing has pulled me through my Crohn's but it's a battle. I live in fear that what I love the most could be taken away. And I've been more ill this year than I have been in a long time."

In the documentary, Amy was seen rushed to hospital after vomiting and passing out during a Strictly tour.

Amy said: "I can't think of how many times I've been in hospital. It's got to be at least over 100 times. When I was 18 or 19 it was every month at least for a week."