According to experts, you’re putting yourself at risk for a myriad of health problems if you don’t go to bed commando.
Wearing underwear in bed is likely a natural habit – especially in the winter – and one you’d never associate to health complications. That’s like saying wearing a hat can cause chronic illness or something similarly wacky.
But apparently restrictive garments can create problems, particularly in women, such as increased risk of bacterial and yeast infections.
American gynecologist Dr. Alyssa Dweck has been advocating to all her patients to cut out underpants when they turn in for the night.
“I tell my patients to sleep without underwear. If the area is constantly covered, especially by fabric that’s not moisture wicking or absorbent, then moisture collects, creating the perfect breeding ground for yeast.”
Dr. Shirley McQuade, Medical Director of Dublin’s Well Woman Centre, further added to the anti-underpants sentiment, saying bacteria vaginosis and thrush become real threats.
“Wearing underwear to bed can cause problems for women in that the temperature is increased and the circulation is low which can allow for bacteria and yeast to thrive causing problems.
“It isn’t just underwear either. Wearing tight lycra while working out can also be a cause of recurring infections in women and I would always advise them to wear loose clothing while at the gym and cotton underwear,” she explained.
Men aren’t excluded from the call to commando either; experts believe wearing boxers overnight can affect a man’s fertility. The long-term overheating of the testicles is the cause.
“It is a long known fact that both testicular function and sperm production are temperature dependent. Permanently or repeatedly increased testicular temperature is harmful for sperm production and may therefore result in poorer fertility,” said Dr. Bart Kuczera of The Beacon Medical Group.
He went on to say a better option would be tight underwear, or warm bathtubs and saunas (we’ll assume he doesn’t mean while in bed).
So if you want to make sure you’re at the lowest risk possible for contracting any sort of health problem, it’s time to skip the skivvies. Make sure you’ve got a blanket close by!