How to check your baby’s temperature

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One of the first things a new mother needs to learn to do is to check the temperature of her baby. Even if your baby has never had her temperature taken before, you may find that it becomes a routine when she seems ill. Checking your baby's temperature can be done in many ways. This article discusses the different methods of determining your baby's temperature.

You may want to check the temperature of your baby when:

  • Your baby looks pale and sick
  • Your baby is too warm
  • To check your baby’s health status
  • You notice fever symptoms

What should your baby’s ideal body temperature be?

Normal temperatures in babies can range from 97 to 100.3 degrees Fahrenheit. An elevated temperature of greater than 100.4 degrees F is considered to be a fever by most doctors.

How to check your baby’s temperature?

As your child grows, the method  you use to take the baby's temperature will likely change. Below are the different ways in which you can check your baby's temperature.

Rectal temperature

You may find it squeamish to take your baby’s temperature rectally, but it is the best and most accurate method of taking a newborn's temperature. Here’s how:

  • Lubricate the thermometer tip with petroleum jelly.
  • Turn on and lay your baby on their back on a flat surface or changing table.
  • Carefully insert 1/2 inch to 1 inch of the lubricated tip into the anal opening. Gently push and avoid forcing.
  • Be sure to hold the thermometer for a few seconds until it beeps or shows a reading.
  • In cases like where you can’t take your newborn’s temperature rectally, you can also take it under the arm or using the forehead.

Temperature under Arm

Here’s how to check your baby's temperature using their underarm:

  • You may want to remove your baby t shirts  for ease of access. Ideally, the thermometer should only touch the skin-not the shirt.
  • Activate the thermometer and place the thermometer tip under your baby’s arm.
  • Make sure that the thermometer stays in their hand by folding their arm closed.
  • Be sure to hold the thermometer for a few seconds until it measures or beeps.
  • When a reading exceeds 99 degrees Fahrenheit or higher, it is considered to be a fever.

Temperature by Ear

Here’s how to take your baby’s temperature by ear,

  • Make sure you read the thermometer's instructions to determine how far you should insert it into the ear for a proper reading.
  • Turn the thermometer on and carefully place the tip inside the ear canal, and do not force it in too far.
  • The thermometer should start beeping or shoe the readings.
  • It is considered to be a fever when your baby’s temperature is 4F or higher.

Forehead Temperature 

  • Turn the thermometer on by pressing and holding the scan button.
  • You should gently sweep the device over your baby's forehead while touching it on the skin and read the temperature.
  • It is considered to be a fever when your baby’s temperature is 4F or higher.

Oral Temperature

Oral readings are typically reserved for children 4 and up since babies have difficulty holding an oral thermometer under their tongue. Before you take your baby's temperature orally, make sure you wait 15 minutes after they have eaten. 

  • Turn on and place the tip of the thermometer behind your baby's tongue.
  • Make sure they have their mouth closed.
  • Wait for the thermometer to display the reading.
  • When a reading exceeds 100 degrees Fahrenheit or higher, it is considered to be a fever.

How to regulate your baby's body temperature

  • The ideal range for your baby’s room temperature should be between 20-20 degrees Celsius. So set the temperature right.
  • Dress Your Baby right. You want to make sure that your baby stays warm in winter by dressing him in a footed sleep suit that ensures his feet and legs stay warm. Put a vest underneath the sleep suit if the room is colder than average.
  • To provide your baby with comfortable, restful sleep, you may require to wrap him in a thick baby blanket. If your bub is not a big fan of baby blanket, keep his hands and legs warm with mittens and socks.
  • Keep the Wind off your baby by shutting the windows when it is extremely cold outside.


Author Bio

I am Andrea Micheal, a post-graduate in humanities and communications, and an inquisitive person who loves writing. I’m working for Tiny Twig and my forte is digital marketing and everything that has to do with phones and screens. I am someone who believes that one person can make a change, and that’s precisely why I took up writing, which is the best tool to communicate these days. I have a decade of experience in writing and marketing, and I still find myself learning new things about it, which I want to share with my readers.

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