The feet must perform all their work with the entire weight of the person on them. The average foot is frequently exposed to cold, heat and wet conditions. There could be bacteria and fungus to fight off and much more. Humans rely on their feet to keep them moving and never consider the abuse they endure until the pain, itching or swelling begins. Here are four ways to change that and to the keep feet healthy and comfortable.

Start With Hygiene

Foot odor is eliminated by washing the feet daily to prevent excess bacteria. Dry feet are less prone to fungus problems that can cause itching, swelling and redness. Trimmed toenails prevent the risk of ingrown nails and the potential infection they often cause.

Keep it Personal

Do not share footwear with anyone. Purchase shoes instead of turning to rental services. Disinfecting sprays are not always effective, and they can pass on foot fungus that can infect the nails. Nail fungus requires a prescription medication to clear up and it could cause nail loss. Avoid problems like athlete’s foot by never going barefoot in public places, including the shower stalls at the gym.

Dress Them Properly

Always wear shoes that fit correctly. Loose footwear causes blisters and can cause people to trip or twist an ankle. Frequently wearing tight shoes can lead to serious problems like arthritis in the feet. Crowding the toes into narrow shoes can create similar problems and lead to the development of calluses or ingrown toenails. Another important factor is socks. Choose hosiery that is breathable so sweat can evaporate and wick away moisture to prevent bacteria and fungus growth.

Add Some Compression

Compression wear is important if the feet are sore and tired at the end of the day or begin to retain fluid. Compression garments improve circulation and stop fluid from collecting in the feet. Better circulation also helps to reduce stiffness and achiness in the feet and legs.

The healthiest feet are those that get some exercise but are not overworked without a break. Elevate the feet slightly in the evening when sitting and do foot stretches throughout the day to reduce the risk of pain and stiffness. A little extra foot care alleviates a lot of common foot problems that make walking uncomfortable.