Those pajamas you sleep in night after night without a trip to the washing machine, could be making you sick.

According to a new survey by the mattress company, Ergoflex, the average man changes his pajamas every 13 days. The average woman waits 17 days before she pulls out a new pair and throws the old ones in the laundry.  Dang lady that's way too long! (This survey was done in Britain)

 

Professor Sally Bloomfield of the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine put it this way. “Pajamas are against your skin. You shed skin cells at a vast rate all the time. They are full of microorganisms..... if they get into the wrong place, they can cause problems.”

 

She goes on to talk about the various bugs that your PJ's can sic on you. Staphylococcus bacteria, can cause infections if they get into cuts and bruises.  E. coli bacteria, you know that comes from the bowel movements, if they get into the urinary tract, they can cause infection.

 

E.coli could get into your PJs/Getty Images

 

So why not change PJ's every night?  Just about half (51 percent) of the women said because PJ's are only worn for a few hours a night, they don't need to be washed as frequently as your outside clothes.

The men blamed it on the women.  73 percent explained that because their partners did the laundry, they had less control over how often the clothes were cleaned.

 

Photo by Julia Conner

 

So how do you tell if it's time the PJ's hit the wash? You smell them.  50 percent of the men and 41 percent of the women said let your nose be the judge.

 

Wrong!

 

To be safe, Bloomfield recommended that people should change their nightwear at least once a week to prevent the buildup of dangerous microbes. Longer than that and even washing might not help.  Bloomfield says the microbes will be transferred to underwear and other clothing that comes into contact with the skin., and then you could spread the filthy germs to your family or roommates.

 

So change your PJ's before it's too late!