If you've ever performed a full-out tango to stuff yourself into a pair of skinny jeans and wondered, "Is this really OK?" we've got your answer: Zip proudly, ladies, despite what you may have heard in the recent news about skinny jeans severing blood flow to a nerve in your thigh.
It turns out that the risk is incredibly unlikely. "If you use common sense and wear jeansÃ¢â‚¬”even super skinny jeansÃ¢â‚¬”that you can button, zip, and walk around in, there should be no chance of nerve damage," says Karen Boyle, M.D., a board certified urologic surgeon at Greater Baltimore Medical Center.
The condition in question is called meralgia paresthetica, which can cause pain, tingling, and numbness in the leg. "Meralgia paresthetica can occur in car accidents when the seatbelt compresses a nerve in the outer thigh, so just imagine how tight your jeans would need to be in order to have the same effect," says Boyle.
And if you've ever wondered whether squeezing muscular legs into matchstick pants could compromise your big O (ÃƒÂ la too much time in the bicycle saddle) the answer is also a resounding N-O. The perineal nerve in your pelvis is essential for sensation in the labia and clitoris; while prolonged, extensive cycling could irritate and damage the nerve, which could ultimately compromise your ability to orgasm, even the tightest pants pose no such risk.
"When wearing skinny jeans there's still plenty of blood flow through the perineal nerve in the pelvis, so your leg wear shouldn't have any impact on your sexual function," says Boyle. Phew! You can continue sporting your red skinnies with pride.
Still, for a more comfortable fit in gam-hugging bottoms, Boyle offers these suggestions:
1. Shop your shape and buy your size. "We all want to squeeze into a smaller size, but ignore the label and buy pants that fit," she says. "People can tell when you're uncomfortable and canÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t breathe, but they can't tell what the number on the tag says."
2. Search for stretch. Pants made with some Lycra or spandex move with you, giving your body the flexibility to go about your day. True denim material, however, doesn't budge, says Boyle.
3. Kick off your heels. Stilettos tilt your pelvis forward. Contorting your body this way can cause even more compression between the fabric and your legs, which may slightly increase your risk of constricting a nerve, she says. "Flats or low one- to two-inch heels will reduce pressure in the upper thigh and hip area."
4. Skip the dryer. Not only will it help the fabric and color last longer, but it will prevent the fabric from shrinking, so you wonÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t have to Zumba your way into your pants.
photo: Jupiterimages/Brand X Pictures/Thinkstock More from WH:
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