According to the CDC, having a fever or chills is one of the first signs you have contracted COVID-19. The severity of this pandemic has required more people to learn and be concerned with the basic signs, including knowing how to take an accurate temperature.
Though you might already know how to take your temperature, if you are taking it inaccurately, it could be more dangerous now than it ever has before. Having a fever is not the only sign of COVID-19, but having this basic knowledge could protect you and your loved ones. Read on to learn the three most accurate ways to detect a fever.
1. Digital Thermometers
This is a common thermometer in most households because it can be used on a variety of age ranges, provides accurate readings, and is generally cheaper than other thermometers. It can be taken using oral, rectal, or axillary methods.
The most accurate reading for children under the age of 3 is the rectal method. For all other ages, you will have to wait 10 to 15 minutes after eating or drinking to take it orally for the most accurate results.
2. Non-Contact Infrared Thermometers
This has become one of the most popular ways to detect a fever since the coronavirus arrived because it is a no-contact thermometer. With most non-contact infrareds, you will point the thermometer perpendicular to the forehead with a bit of space in between.
The infrared will detect the temperature of the forehead’s skin, reading the thermal radiation emitted. This is a great option, as it provides accurate results very quickly without needing any person to person contact. If used correctly, following all manufacturer’s guidelines, it is very accurate.
Besides the regular infrared thermometer, there are new ways to learn more about detecting temperature using thermal radiation. Some apps connect to specific thermal cameras and only require that you look into the camera to accurately detect your body’s temperature. This is a great option for businesses, as there is virtually no contact, and it is done very quickly.
3. Tympanic Ear Thermometers
These thermometers also use infrared to detect a fever inside the ear canal. This option works for all ages older than 6 months and is accurate if done correctly. Simply put, the thermometer inside the ear, and you should get a reading quickly.
If you were laying on the ear, have a build-up of wax, or an ear infection, the reading could be inaccurate. However, a small, curved ear canal could also provide inaccurate readings. This type would benefit better from one of the previously mentioned options.
Best Fever Detectors
In the era of COVID-19, it might be your best bet to have all three types of thermometers on hand so you can double and triple check your fever. If you are using them on kids, however, it’s smart to use the same thermometer, so you have consistent reads, and it is easier for them to get used to.
No matter what type you decide on, the most important thing is to use them correctly, following all manufacturer guidelines. When in doubt, research your particular thermometer for all the instructions you may need. Browse through more of our health articles for more answers to all your questions.