Taking Your Baby’s Temperature
– Tips & advice!
Babies are not born with a fully developed immune system, making them vulnerable to illness as well as regulating their own body temperature. Fever in babies is one thing that parents dread the most and it’s important to know what to do when your baby has a temperature and what sort of baby thermometer to use.
Signs you should take your baby’s temperature:
Even though parents should find peace in knowing that fever in babies is a normal body defense mechanism against potential threats that may cause trouble, it doesn’t mean that a baby fever should be taken lightly.
- Suddenness of the change in temperature.
If one moment your baby is okay and the next your baby feels hot and appears flushed, then it will be best to keep a close eye on other things that accompany this sudden change in your baby’s temperature. The abrupt change in babies temperature signifies that there is something unusual going on inside their little bodies. It is also advisable to investigate the possible cause of the sudden change in temperature.
2. A significant difference in the baby’s behavior.
If your baby seems to not be his/her usual bubbly self then it may spell trouble. Keep your eyes open for shifts in your baby’s usual routines and activities, and observe closely for further action.
3. A lot of crying
Crying is always a baby’s way of telling adults that there is something wrong going on, whether with their bodies (hunger, pain, etc.,) or something else.
4. There is loss of appetite
Your baby may reject eating food in this situation, even preparing his/her favorite baby formula will not be able to do the trick.
5. Refusal to drink
Refusing to drink water usually comes along with a loss of appetite. If both occur at once, it could be something serious. Staying hydrated is a priority.
6. Unable to sleep soundly
A sign of discomfort could be the lack of sleep. The change in temperature could be what is keeping them up.
7. Disinterested in things that usually keep their attention
They may temporarily have an aversion towards playing and other activities.
8. Looks “weak” and less energetic than usual
Your baby may generally look lethargic and as if he/she no longer has the usual pent up energy he/she used to have.
When your baby is shivering, it is most probably due to rapid muscle contractions that increase the body’s temperature. As our body fights off undesirable organisms that may be inside our bodies, we shiver in effect and our temperature increases.
10. Excessive sweating
Excessive sweating is the body’s way of balancing out what’s going on inside one’s body. As your baby sweats, it helps in cooling his/her body.
Baby is showing signs of a fever – what do I do now?
Take your baby’s temperature.
A temperature hitting 101.4°F and over means that something serious is going on. In taking your baby’s temperature, you should ensure reliability and accuracy in the baby thermometer that you will use. Take for example the two baby thermometers listed below:
The fastest way to take baby’s temperature is with an infrared ear and/or forehead thermometer. The beauty of a forehead thermometer is that you simply swipe across baby’s forehead and the reading is there. An ear model also does the trick but you may find baby wriggling a little when something is in it’s ear! The Cherub Baby Ear and Forehead thermometer provides you with both of these options and offers the following benefits:
- Take both ear and forehead readings and compare. Why? Because a forehead reading can be slightly different to an ear reading, which can also be slightly different to a mouth, underarm or rectal reading. Cross checking between methods will give you the re-assurance of whether baby really has a temperature or not. And remember if you take the thermometer from a very cold room to a warm room where baby is, you need to let the thermometer acclimatize for 5 minutes otherwise the reading you get could be low.
- Some babies simply wont tolerate a probe in their ear or any where else. This is where the ease of the forehead mode comes into play.
- Takes a temperature reading in 1 second! Quick and easy. For this reason you can quickly take multiple readings to ensure you didn’t just hit a “hot spot” as a forehead can have hot and cold spots.
- It doesn’t require expensive probe covers like most other brands. Simply wipe clean after each use with an alcohol wipe. Cheap and effective. It is critical you clean the probe cover after each use to ensure the dust or dirt is cover the temperature sensor.
If your baby takes a dummy then you cannot get more convenient than a dummy baby thermometer! Just pop it in baby’s mouth and within a minute it is taking baby’s temperature which can be seen via the digital screen on the front of the thermometer.
Contact your pediatrician
If ever in doubt always seek medical advice. Your GP should be able to know the best possible course of action to do in these situations, and listening carefully to what they will advise you and what meds should be administered to your young one is the key.
So that’s about it! Remember that signs and symptoms vary from baby to baby; it is not always the same for all babies. The reading 101.4°F is a go signal for you to take further and immediate action. Always keep in mind that your GP’s advice is primary over our own judgment of the situation, let them guide you on the best thing to do.
A fever contracted when a baby is teething, is normal. Whilst it is normal, you will have to take note that the baby’s temperature must be lower than 101.4°F. A fever during baby teething is usually high enough to elicit some change in temperature but low enough to not reach the 101.4°F temperature cap. It can also be further accompanied by drooling, swollen gums and endless chewing on fingers, pacifiers and pretty much anything your baby can get its hands on!