Always use a digital thermometer to check your child’s temperature. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends that parents remove mercury thermometers from their homes to prevent accidental exposure and poisoning. It’s a good idea to remind grandparents of this, or even buy them a new digital thermometer for use in their house.
So, what type of digital thermometer is best? It depends on the age of your child. Here are three types:
Digital multiuse – This can be used in the bottom (rectally), in the mouth (orally) or under the arm (axillary), just don’t use the same thermometer for different positions. This is good to use right from birth.
Temporal artery – This is used on the side of the forehead and may have best results at age 3 months and older.
Tympanic – This is placed in the ear and is most reliable when used at age 6 months and older.
For more information on the different types of thermometers and how to use them properly, click on this link to the AAP article How to Take a Child’s Temperature.