Shapewear garments under fire for posing possible health risks

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MANATEE COUNTY, Fla. - If you wear the figure flattering garments, you are not alone.  Millions of women in the U.S purchase and wear SPANX and other shapewear products with the hope of looking thinner, smoother and lwell, less lumpy.

But now, doctors say the apparel may give you more than a slimming effect.

Dr. Stacy South of Women's Choice Oncology in Bradenton says: "Squeezing into something three sizes too small could cause intestinal problems, including acid reflux, and promote urinary incontinence."

But this is in extreme cases and if the garments are worn in the manner in which they are supposed to be, such as for smoothing lines and bumps, then you can avoid these problems.

Jodi Frauhiger of Foxy Lady/West on St. Armands Circle says there have been no reported problems with SPANX or other shapewear products. She said, "Never, never, but as women, how many times a week do we wear shoes that hurt our feet, we do whatever it takes to look good."

Sales associate Kathlene Roth was wearing her SPANX and says, "Oh we've come a long way since days of corsets and days of my grandma wearing a girdle."

Roth wears them frequently and said she has no problems with them. "I would sleep in my SPANX if my husband wouldn't mind so much."

Dr. South does not recommend wearing the products for great length or time or layering them as lower body garments may promote yeast infections, which thrive in warm environments.

But using common sense, knowing how tight is too tight and when to take a break can certainly help you stay healthy and allow you to continue wearing the figure flattering apparel.

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