How to Take Your Baby’s Temperature the Right Way?
I call it “mom’s instinct” when you can read what is going on with your child by just one look. I bet that you have also mastered natural ways to know if your little one has a fever. However, learning how to check your baby’s temperature is critical for an accurate result.
When it comes to fever, we can never be sure.
Fever in Babies
Fever is a sign that the body is fighting an infection. For babies, body temperature is confusing at first. Newborns are not capable of regulating their body temperature. So, when there are changes in weather or other factors that can affect the body heat, they find it difficult to adjust.
A normal temperature for an infant is 37 deg. Celsius. A reading that is more than that is already an indication of fever. Nevertheless, there are situations that even though babies are too hot, they are completely healthy. Therefore, it is vital to pay attention to such conditions.
I encourage you always to keep a digital thermometer at home.
How to Make Temperature Readings Accurate?
Temperature readings are a significant data for an accurate treatment of your child’s illness. Although there are other methods to determine the body temperature such as fever strips, I still recommend using a digital thermometer for an accurate result. Below is a guide on what to do first before checking the temperature.
Points to Remember
Different Kinds of Digital Thermometer
#1. Standard Multi-use Digital Thermometer
This type is for oral, rectal and axillary (under the arm) use. There is a heat sensor at the tip of the thermometer. It reads the temperature when it touches the body. Remember that it is unhygienic to use the same thermometer for both areas.
#2. Tympanic (Ear canal) Digital Infrared Thermometer
Tympanic Digital Thermometer gets the reading from the heat waves released by the eardrums. This is effective for babies that are six months and above. Keep in mind that too much earwax can make the reading incorrect.
#3. Temporal Artery (Forehead) Digital Thermometer
The forehead thermometer takes its reading from the infrared heat waves released by the temporal artery of the forehead. This type is reliable for newborns that are three months old and below.
How to check your baby’s temperature correctly using a digital thermometer?
#1. Rectal Thermometer - Reads any slight fluctuations of temperature. Therefore, it is the most accurate thermometer.
#2. Temporal Thermometer - is a lot easier to use than the rectal.
#3. Armpit Thermometer - is usually the first method that any will use in checking the temperature. It is simple, convenient, and safe. However, since it is external, it tends to be less accurate than the others by about two degrees. Therefore, if your baby is three months old or lower, it is better not to opt for this type.
#4. Ear thermometer - is the fastest to get a reading amongst all. It is safe and does not create any discomfort to babies. However, you need to insert it correctly for a precise and reliable result.
Remember, babies that are six months and younger cannot use this thermometer. Their ear passage is still narrow making it hard for insertion.
#5. Oral Thermometer - is the typical temperature method even for adults. Only children 4 years old and older are safe to use this procedure. They can already hold the thermometer while waiting for the result but ALWAYS keep an eye on them.
Since the rectal thermometer is the most accurate but also the most difficult to use, I am showing you a video on how to do it correctly.
Here is an age guideline for measuring temperature. Take the temperature using the thermometer according to the child’s age.
Knowing what to do when baby has a fever is crucial for a mom. Learning how to check your baby’s temperature is necessary for monitoring when she is sick. Using digital thermometers are less stressful than those traditional types. However, you must know when to need help from doctors especially when the reading is consistently high.