Why women are giving up on wearing knickers for health reasons

  • Marie Claire is supported by its audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn commission on some of the items you choose to buy.
  • Full disclosure: This story might make you feel uncomfortable…

    Wearing the wrong pair of knickers can really ruin a day. Seriously, is there anything more annoying and distracting than wearing an uncomfortable pair? And don’t even get us started on VPLs. But did you ever consider that your pants might not even be good for your ‘down there’ health?

    Yup, according to a new report, some women are giving up wearing kickers altogether – and not because they can be mightily uncomfortable – because your undies can also lead to some pretty nasty health risks.

    Speaking to the Mail Online, gynecologist Nicholas Raine-Fenning from fertility clinic Nurture in Nottingham says that wearing the ‘wrong knickers’ can cause major problems.

    ‘It would be better to wear no knickers than the wrong kind of knickers… Nylon knickers ought to come with a health warning. They’re only acceptable for a short period of time, being a high risk factor for irritation.’

    He explains that wearing them at night can lead to even greater risks. ‘Whatever you do, don’t wear them at night, when many women wish to have on some form of undergarment.

    ‘Wear only loose, cotton garments, not tight or synthetic pants. If you must wear nylon underwear, please ensure it has a cotton gusset.’

    It’s not just uncomfortable infections that knickers can cause, Dr Raine-Fenning also says that tight control pants can also put huge pressure on the abdomen.

    ‘Think of the abdomen as a balloon,’ he says. ‘If you compress it, the increase in pressure has to go somewhere.‘It is either directed to the pelvis (which could increase the risk of prolapse in susceptible women) or to the diaphragm, virtually creating the effect of a hiatus hernia – though it would be unlikely to actually cause one unless you were already at risk. But it means your stomach and oesophagus are pushed back into your chest, possibly leading to reflux.’

    Interesting (if not slightly scary) stuff.

    Reading now