how long can stds live on clothing

how long can stds live on clothing

STDs Living on Clothing

Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) can be contracted through unprotected sex, and in some cases, they can be spread through contact with contaminated clothing. Knowing how long certain STDs can live on clothing pieces can help individuals prevent the spread of the infection.

How Long Can STDs Live on Clothing?

Most STDs can live on clothing for a short amount of time. Here is a general guideline of the time period these STDs can exist outside of the body:

  • HIV: One to two days
  • Herpes: A few hours
  • Syphilis: A few hours
  • Chlamydia and Gonorrhea: Hours to days

Even though most STDs cannot live very long on clothing, it is still important to take preventative measures to avoid the spread of infection.

Preventing Transmission of the Virus

To prevent the spread of STDs via contaminated clothing, the following guidelines should be followed:

  • Always practice safe sex and wear condoms
  • When engaging in sexual activities, change clothing and bedding frequently
  • Wash clothing and bedding regularly, and always follow instructions on the care label
  • Immediately dispose of clothing and bedding that have been contaminated by bodily fluids
  • Avoid any contact with soiled clothing and bedding


Being aware of how long STDs can live on clothing is essential for preventing the spread of infection. While most STDs cannot survive on clothing for a long period of time, it is important to take the necessary precautions and practice safe sex.

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