How to take a baby’s temperature

Has your baby got a fever? It’s important to be able to tell a baby’s temperature when they are ill so as to ascertain the seriousness of the fever. Here’s some info on how to take a baby’s temperature….

A fever means that the body is fighting an infection. Normal body temperature is usually between 36 degrees C and 37 degrees C, and a fever is considered to be a temperature of 37.5 Degrees C or above.

Your babs is under three months and has a temperature of 38 degrees C or more or under six months and has a temperature of 39 degrees C or more, then things are serious and you should get your babs to a doctor asap. – According to the NHS.

So how to take a baby’s temperature?

The best way is with a digital thermometer (supermarkets and pharmacies) – and temperature is taken in the rectum, ear or armpit, the rectum providing the most accurate reading (useful for newborns, when a raised temperature could be serious and a precise reading is important).

Rectal thermometers are uncomfortable and obtaining a reading from a squirming baby is hard work. Ear thermometers are much easier to use but they have to be inserted into the ear just so (difficult with tiny babies) in order to get an accurate reading. Armpit readings are a simple task but less accurate than the other two methods (so not idea for babies younger than three months) – this method is most commonly used by parents; place thermometer under arm, hold arm against side and wait 15 seconds for an accurate reading (some thermometers beep when done).

And some tips when taking a baby’s temperature; bathing and swaddling can affect your baby’s temperature, so wait 20 minutes (after a bath or swaddle) before attempting a reading. Other factors that may affect a reading are: the temperature of  the room your child has been spending time in and how many layers of clothes babs is wearing – both factors may make babs ‘too warm’, so give them a chance to cool before taking temperature.

Also remember that if there is anything at all that concerns you about your baby’s temperature, ‘serious’ fever or not; definitely contact your GP.

For more info on how to take a baby’s temperature, visit nhs.uk.