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It also offers a no-touch option. We started the search for best thermometer by diving into the recent research on the subject, looking at what science says about the benefits and drawbacks of each of the different types of thermometers. Then we spoke to three physicians for their opinions on the best thermometers for at-home use.
John Mills, an infectious-disease specialist at the University of Michigan, talked to us about adult thermometer use. For kids, we spoke to Dr. Suzie Roberts, a New York—based emergency department pediatrician, and Dr. Sahib El-Radhi, pediatrician and author of a article on ideal thermometers. If you have a kid, the upgrade to a forehead or ear device may take some of the struggle out of measuring a temperature. We tested these thermometers keeping in mind that they would be for children who were at least 6 months old and for adults.
They were not tested for rectal use on newborns, and the three methods we looked at oral, ear, and forehead are not recommended for that age group. Digital thermometers have made difficult-to-read mercury thermometers obsolete. They come in several formats—the key is to find a user-friendly thermometer that offers accurate and consistent readings with the least amount of discomfort. These stick thermometers are simple and offer reliable measurements and fast results, but you do need to keep your mouth closed around the device. This is tough for most toddlers and preschoolers, so they are recommended for anyone age 5 and up.
Oral thermometers today usually pull triple duty as axillary armpit and rectal thermometers as well. We opted to focus on these multipurpose thermometers rather than ones that offer only one option—where you decide to put it is up to you. In addition to the oral variety, you can now get affordable ear and forehead models for use at home.
Ear or tympanic-membrane thermometers measure temperature based on heat radiated through the tympanic membrane, or eardrum. The Mayo Clinic does not recommend these thermometers for newborns; Mayo advocates a minimum age of 6 months—basically when children are old enough to balk at the rectal thermometer but too young to manage an oral one. At home, I use an ear thermometer with my toddler and an oral for my 7-year-old. Forehead or temporal-artery thermometers measure temperature based on heat radiated from the temporal artery running across the forehead—all it takes is a light touch of the thermometer to the forehead.
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On the downside, results from these thermometers may be affected by things like sweating and air temperature taking the temperature itself may not wake up the sick person, but wiping the sweat off his head first will probably do the job anyway. Although research consistently shows that rectal temperatures in children are most accurate, some studies done on children suggest that, when used correctly, measurements from forehead thermometers are close to those obtained rectally.
A few ear and forehead thermometers. Photo: Michael Hession. Oral thermometers are all similar in structure and attempt to distinguish themselves through bright colors. For adult at-home use, Dr.
John Mills said he would buy an oral thermometer, citing an article published in in the Annals of Internal Medicine that specifically focused on adult temperature readings. Researchers looked at studies that compared temperatures taken centrally internally—via the pulmonary artery, bladder, or esophagus with ones taken peripherally oral, tympanic membrane, temporal artery, axillary.
Not surprisingly, they found that central methods were always more accurate. In medicine we are always a little wary of new technology—if your device is complicated or you are unable to use it properly, it may not be as reliable. I would use oral first and then tympanic membrane.
11 Best Braun Forehead Thermometer images | Braun forehead thermometer, Sick toddler, Sick baby
However, this is in contrast to a small study that suggested temporal artery thermometers are more accurate than ear thermometers in children. No word on what difference in adult and child foreheads might cause this difference. In our own tests, we found both forehead and ear thermometers to be accurate within the stated 0. As someone who grew up sharing a room with a light sleeper, I also know that a thermometer for kids should be fast, painless, and, ideally, silent to minimize the risk of waking either the sleeping patient or a hypothetically cantankerous sibling.
Once we knew which categories we wanted to look at, we chose thermometers based on customer ratings and best-selling items on Amazon and those suggested by major product review sites like Consumer Reports , Thoroughly Reviewed , and Parenting. Then we narrowed things by considering the features like backlit displays, or color-coded systems that flash to indicate whether a temperature is normal, a low-grade fever, or a high-grade fever.
We also looked for devices that were easy to clean, rather than ones that require disposable protective caps or sleeves. Rectal thermometers are still considered the gold standard—they offer the most reliably accurate measurement of core body temperature. A fever in a newborn of more than Even though it remains the most accurate measurement, rectal temp is going to be a hard sell past infancy.
For the older crowd, there are other, less invasive ways to go, and those formats are accurate enough for the purposes of home use. One of the features we were most interested in was the ability to silence a thermometer. Before you start thinking about factors like ease of use and extra features, the most important aspect of a thermometer is always going to be its accuracy and consistency in measurements. I have Braun the ear ones!
Very accurate and fast reading. My son had fever and it read F. In ER, they had similar reading and even the rectal ones had similar reading. Very pleased and must have!
Extremely inaccurate … Very displeased id return it if hubby hadnt tossed the packaging on me. Your email address will not be published. Respond to this post. Notify me of follow-up comments by email. Don't Miss Out!
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