Slipping into a pair of thong underwear helps you eliminate the dreaded visible panty line. However, this sleek style of panty might be a harbor for moisture, heat and unwelcome bacteria as well. Paying attention to warning signs for an infection or irritation, as well as avoiding thongs in certain situations can minimize your risk.

Because the thong rides right up between your backside cheeks, it is more likely to irritate the skin. The movement involved while wearing a thong for extended periods of time may create unwanted friction down below. As a result, you might notice irritation and discomfort should your thong rub you the wrong way.

Tips

Make sure your thong is the right size. A too-small thong can increase chances of skin irritation. If the thong leaves indentations on your skin, go up a size for a better fit.

Your thong has the potential to transport unwelcome bacteria from your rectum into your urethra, which can result in a urinary tract infection. In some situations, such as when you’re exercising, this movement of bacteria into your urethra is even more likely, and sweat can help steer the bacteria into your vagina.

Tips

Avoid wearing thongs when you’re exercising. Choose a pair of cotton briefs, instead, which are a comfortable and sweat-resistant option.

Tight clothing, including thongs, can trap heat and moisture, which can build up in your thong. This warm, moist environment can be a breeding ground for candida, the bacteria responsible for a yeast infection.

Thong underwear will rub against your skin more than a full-bottomed brief. This constant friction, which can occur daily for habitual thong wearers, can lead to some undesirable skin issues like skin tags, small tissue flaps that hang off the body. In the case of thong loyalists, they can appear in the bikini area where the thong rubs against the skin.

Hemorrhoids, or swollen veins in the anus, can also be irritated by thong underwear since the thong’s backside sits in this area. Again, the friction caused by the thong can exacerbate hemorrhoids and increase discomfort.