Turns out there are some rules around binning old underwear!
A doctor has warned that holding on to your favourite pair of comfy underpants may not be such a great idea.
In fact, you could be holding onto some pretty nasty bacteria – even if you wash your underwear regularly.
According to the Good Housekeeping Institute, clean underwear can contain up to 10,000 living bacteria - even if they have been washed after every use.
Intimate health specialist Dr Shirin Lakhani, agrees that underwear needs to be thrown away regularly, explaining that bacteria can be present even if they’ve been washed on a hot cycle.
"Your underwear is in close contact with your skin and more specifically your intimate areas for prolonged periods of time,” she explained to women’s website Tyla.
“As a result it comes into contact with a lot of dead skin from those areas as well as bacteria - both healthy naturally-occurring bacteria that we all have, as well as more sinister bacteria that can be a result of infections such as thrush and STIs.
"There is some research that suggests that even washing your underwear in a washing machine won't always rid it completely of bacteria such as E.coli."
While most bacteria isn’t too concerning, there are some that can cause issues – especially in intimate areas.
And while she advised everyday underwear needs to be replaced every 12 months, underwear worn during exercise should be changed more often, around every six months.
Well, looks like you’ve found the perfect excuse to go underwear shopping!
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