Sorry, But Your Freshly Washed Undies Are Full of Bacteria

There are some pieces of clothing you can get away with wearing more than one day, but underpants aren't one of them. Most of us don't feel comfortable putting on a pair of underwear until it has gone through a vigorous, soapy wash cycle. According to experts, even that may not be enough to fully sanitize your most intimate garments. In fact, a study led by microbiologist Dr. Charles Gerba indicates that the average pair of clean undies contains as many as 10,000 living bacteria. The bacteria that cling to your underwear are the same microbes that thrive on your skin, no matter how well you wash them, and a buildup of that bacteria over time could lead to health problems like urinary tract infections. To keep your underwear as sanitary as possible, throw away any that you’ve had for a year or longer and replace them with new ones. In the meantime, you can reduce germ buildup by washing them in hot water (at least 140ยบ F) with bleach. Letting them dry in the sun is another good way to kill bacteria.