Know More About Thermometer and Their Uses
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Know More About Thermometer and Their Uses

A thermometer is a device that helps you to accurately identify if someone has a fever. This further allows you to decide the necessary steps to be taken care of. There are various types of thermometers available in the market and each device is designed uniquely. Not all thermometers function the same way, for example a thermometer suitable for an infant may not be suitable for an adult.

While buying a thermometer you should always keep in mind how the device works and if it's suitable for your condition. A thermometer comes with a manufacturer's instruction which you should carefully keep in mind while reading a person's body temperature. Thermometers can also measure both human and animal body temperature. Regardless of the type you opt for, you must read the manufacturer's instructions carefully because the thermometer will not show an accurate result if not used correctly.

You must never use a thermometer meant for another purpose. In this article, we have mentioned the best thermometers and their uses.

Types and use of thermometer

Oral Thermometer

There are two types of oral thermometers - digital or a mercury thermometer. Both of them have their benefits and shortcomings. A regular oral temperature is 98.6 �F. If the oral temperature is between 97 �F to 99 �F it is considered to be normal body temperature as body temperatures vary from person to person.

However, if your oral thermometer reading is more than 99 �F then you are running on a fever. The use of this thermometer is to measure a person's oral temperature. Oral thermometers are suitable for children over 3 years and adults and provide you with the most accurate result.

The only shortcoming is, people with breathing issues might not be able to keep their mouths closed for a long time which is needed for a correct oral thermometer reading.

Digital Thermometer

Digital thermometers can be used to measure temperature in the mouth, rectum, or armpit. These thermometers are designed to use heat sensors that identify body temperature. Digital thermometers provide you with the correct body temperature reading within a minute or even lesser. While measuring body temperature with a digital thermometer you must remember that armpit (axillary) temperature flows nearly � to 1 �F colder than an oral temperature.

Rectal thermometers flow � to 1 �F hotter than an oral temperature. Rectal readings are proven to be the most accurate for infants and small children as you need to put the tip of the device under your tongue with the mouth closed.

You must keep in mind that oral readings won't be accurate if you measure them right after having a meal or drinking as it tends to catch the food's temperature in your mouth. You should never use the same thermometer for rectal and oral readings for hygiene purposes. Digital thermometers work on batteries that must be changed systematically.

Temporal Thermometer

Temporal thermometers are also known as forehead thermometers are suitable for infants as well as an adult because they do not require physical contact. These thermometers use infrared sensors to provide you with an accurate body temperature reading. The infrared sensors measure the branch of the carotid artery that is the superficial temporal arteries temperature.

To get an accurate reading you must rightly position the thermometer and follow the manufacturer's instructions. They are also called the non-contact infrared thermometer. Forehead temperature flows nearly 1 �F (0.6 �C) colder as compared to oral temperature.

Due to its no contact benefit, they can be used in any public venue like an airport, stores, or stadiums. Within a few seconds, they provide you with an accurate body temperature reading. However, as these thermometers tend to get affected by external factors like the wind they may not be a long-lasting device.

Mercury Thermometer

Mercury thermometers are one of the most traditional ways of measuring someone's body temperature. These thermometers can be used for oral, rectal, or armpit. As the thermometer is made of glass that contains mercury, it has a possibility of breaking and letting the mercury escape that can later result in hazardous conditions.

For this reason, this type of thermometer is no longer widely used or even available in the market. Also, they take a much longer time to read your body temperature. As we know, durability is a vital note to be kept in mind while purchasing a thermometer, the mercury thermometer is more durable than any other liquid-filled thermometers.

Considering all the liquid-filled thermometers, the mercury-filled glass thermometer has a high thermal conductivity along with high sensitivity to temperatures and is vividly visible for you to read your body temperature measurement. Hence they are the most accurate thermometers.

The mercury thermometer price is a little costlier as compared to the other thermometers.

Pacifier Thermometer

A pacifier thermometer is an easy way to measure the body temperature of an infant. Suckignon a pacifier can help the baby settle as it reduces the risk of sudden unexpected death in infancy. The use of this thermometer is to measure a baby's body temperature and is considered to be one of the best thermometers for infants.

However, not all babies prefer to suck on a pacifier. These thermometers do have a slight chance of increasing the middle ear infection and can also cause dental problems if used for children above the age of four or five.

They do not provide you with an accurate reading but they do give you an idea about your baby's approximate body temperature. Pacifier thermometers require you to keep inside your baby's mouth for up to six minutes without moving the thermometer.

App-based Thermometer

These are free phone apps created to measure the environment's temperature reading. However, there are phone apps that do take people's body temperature but they rely on digital thermometers backed up by a Bluetooth connection. You can orally, rectally, or use your armpit to measure the temperature.

Within ten seconds they provide you with your reading. Some phone apps even provide you with the next steps you must take if you have been detected with a fever. App-based thermometer prices are comparatively more expensive than any other digital thermometer without a Bluetooth link.

Plastic-strip Thermometer

The liquid crystal thermometer or temperature strip, or plastic strip thermometer includes heat-sensitive liquid crystals inside a plastic strip that changes its color to show various body temperatures. The plastic strip thermometer holds the mechanical characteristics of fluid but has the visual characteristics of a particular crystal. Temperature differences can change the color of that crystal.

The disposable plastic strip thermometers are best suited for household and pharmaceutical use. As per medical purposes, these need to be positioned against the forehead and is considered to be much safer than the mercury devices. These thermometers are proven to show the exact body temperature reading.

Thermometer: FAQs

Q. What are the 3 types of thermometers?

A. The 3 types of thermometers are:

  • IR Thermometer or Infrared Thermometer
  • Digital Thermometers
  • Mercury Thermometer

Q. Where is the best place to use a thermometer?

A. Oral or under the tongue is the best place to use a thermometer for checking the temperature. To get the right reading during this process, the person whose temperature is being checked should be able to breathe by her/his nose.

Q.What is the most accurate thermometer for home use?

A. iProven Forehead and Ear Thermometer DMT-489 is the most accurate thermometer available in the market for home use.

Q. How do I check my temperature with an infrared thermometer?

A.The person who is using the IR thermometer should firstly read the instructions and manufacturer's guidelines to adjust the settings accordingly. After the settings are done, follow the below steps:

  • Hold the infrared thermometers sensing area perpendicularly to your forehead and stay stationary for a few seconds.
  • The distance between the forehead and the sensing area depends on the thermometer. This distance can be found in the instructions.
  • Ensure that the sensing area is clean and dry. Also, do not touch the sensing area while measuring the temperature.