Experts believe that your underwear preferences could be affecting your health.
Octavia Cannon, a board-certified OBGYN, told Seventeen why women might be putting their health at risk with their underwear choices.
Instead of giving women a long lecture, however, Cannon kept it brief by outlining these six simple rules for picking out underwear.
1. Avoid thongs
Even though saucy lingerie can help turn up the heat in the bedroom, wearing a thong could be detrimental to your health.
Cannon explained the stringed undies can cause bacteria, including E. Coli, to spread from the anus to the vagina.
She revealed: “Think about where the string slides when you sit down in a thong.”
If you’re not willing to part with the skimpy panties anytime soon, take them off at night to give your body a breather.
2. Pick cotton undies
Cotton is a more breathable material than silk or other lacy undies.
Cannon believes that choosing the airy option can stop grossness festering in your underwear and prevent infection.
3. Always change your underwear after exercising
The post-gym shower won’t do much for your hygiene unless you bring along a fresh pair of panties.
Cannon revealed that your sweaty fitness gear is often a place that harbors infection.
She explained: “Yeast and bacteria love a warm, moist, dark environment.”
4. Use unscented detergent
It can be tempting to chuck in a load of nice-smelling laundry detergent and fabric softener into your washing.
As scented products can end up irritating the skin, it’s always safe to opt for unscented varieties.
5. Don’t squeeze into underwear that doesn’t fit
You may have a favorite pair of panties that you now find it tricky to pull past your thighs.
But there’s a very important reason why you should avoid squeezing into them.
Cannon said: “If your panties are leaving marks on your skin, you are putting yourself at risk for vaginal infections and rashes.”
6. Never re-wear undies
This one may seem like a no-brainer, but everyone’s run out of clean knickers at some point in their lives.
Although it might be tempting to turn a pair inside out and use them again, you could be putting your body at risk of infection.
This article originally appeared on The Sun