Baby Gear Tips: Thermometers
Boys Town Pediatrics
I recommend you have a couple. The most basic kind of rectal one is this. These are like eight bucks at Walgreens, Target, or Babies "R" Us. This can be used in the armpit or rectal. If you get this one, ignore the little color scheme they give you in terms of yellow or red or this is a fever.
Just pay attention to what we tell you because the scheme or the coding they put on the back is not really what you need to worry about, so 100.4 or higher.
Usually what I like to do first is do something noninvasive, and if you are getting around a hundred, then you can confirm it with a rectal.
So your options for that, there is the forehead one. You just go across the forehead. Some of them you touch behind the ear, some of them you don't and it gives you a reading and it's fairly accurate.
If you are over 100.4 already, you don't necessarily have to confirm it with rectal. If you are in the 99 range, which is not a fever, it can still be a normal temp that is where you may want to say ok I'll get the rectal temperature and check it.
The ear thermometer ones, those I don't trust as much on little babies as much as I do older kids because how those work, they shoot an infrared beam off of the ear drum and reflect back and record an accurate temperature. Finding a babies ear drum is incredibly difficult. It is tiny little narrow holes. You won't be able to see it; I can barely see it in the clinic with my otoscope. And if you have a gob of wax in there it is going to be hitting the infrared beam right off wax and back so you'll get readings all over the place.
These can be expensive so you can just do this, get a couple of them because when you it, the batteries will always be dead. It's just something about it that when you need it, the batteries are always dead.
If you do rectal, just buy a package of little plastic covers. Just when you do these, you can lubricate them, just don't use petroleum jelly. I like petroleum jelly for a lot of other stuff but you need a water based lubricant if you are going to be putting it inside. So like KY Jelly.
You only have to get the metal part in there so you don't have to hub it to the bottom, just do a little bit and your baby will thank you.
Learn tips for new parents when shopping for a baby thermometer.