Every child occasionally develops a fever. A fever, on its own, is normally harmless and might even be beneficial; it is frequently an indication that the body is fighting an illness. However, a high fever may be an indication of a more serious illness that requires your doctor’s care.
What Thermometer Types Are Available?
A mercury glass thermometer was previously a common fixture in most medical cabinets. Mercury thermometers are not recommended today due to the possibility of them breaking and allowing mercury to evaporate and be breathed. Consider the following while selecting a thermometer:
- Digital thermometers. These thermometers take body temperature readings via electrical heat sensors. They are suitable for usage in the rectum (rectal), mouth (oral), or armpit (armpit) (axillary). Typically, armpit temperatures are the least accurate of the three.
- Digital ear thermometers (tympanic membrane). These thermometers monitor the temperature inside the ear canal using an infrared scanner. Bear in mind that earwax or a tiny, bent ear canal can cause an ear thermometer’s temperature to be inaccurate.
- Temporal artery thermometers. These thermometers take the temperature of the temporal artery in the forehead using an infrared scanner. Even if a youngster is sleeping, this form of thermometer can be used.
Read the thermometer’s directions carefully. Clean the thermometer’s tip before and after each use according to the manufacturer’s instructions. If you intend to take a rectal temperature using a digital thermometer, purchase another digital thermometer for oral use. Each thermometer should be labeled, and do not use the same thermometer in both locations.
Never leave your child unattended while you take his or her temperature for safety reasons and to ensure the thermometer remains in place.
How is temperature taken?
- Rectal temperature. Turn on the digital thermometer and apply petroleum jelly to the thermometer’s tip. Place your newborn or youngster on his or her back, elevate his or her thighs, and put the lubricated thermometer into the rectum. Alternatively, you can place your child on your lap or another solid surface on his or her stomach. If you place your child on his or her stomach, place your hand against the child’s lower back to secure the child. Never attempt to overcome any resistance with a rectal thermometer. Maintain the thermometer’s position until the thermometer indicates that it is finished. Take the thermometer out and make a note of the reading.
- Oral temperature. Turn on the digital thermometer. Place the thermometer’s tip at the back of your child’s tongue and advise your child to keep his or her lips tight. When the thermometer indicates that it is finished, remove it and read the reading. If your child has eaten or drunk in the last 15 minutes, wait 15 minutes before taking his or her temperature by mouth.
- Armpit temperature. Turn on the digital thermometer. When placing the thermometer beneath your child’s armpit, ensure that it makes contact with skin and not with clothing. While the device is reading your child’s temperature, hug him or her tightly, pressing the thermometer’s side against your chest. Maintain a firm grip on the thermometer until it indicates that it is finished. Take the thermometer out and make a note of the reading.
- Ear temperature. Turn on the digital thermometer. Gently insert the thermometer into the ear of your child. Follow the directions included with the thermometer to ensure that the thermometer is inserted into the ear canal at the right distance. Maintain a firm grip on the thermometer until it indicates that it is finished. Take the thermometer out and make a note of the reading.
- Temporal artery temperature. Turn on the digital thermometer. Gently sweep the thermometer across the brow of your child. Take the thermometer out and make a note of the reading.
When notifying your child’s doctor of a temperature, provide the reading and describe how the temperature was obtained. Ask your child’s doctor if you have any doubts or questions (Soalan) to understand the situation or condition of your child.