Let us see each of them: Oral –You may know this from your teenage days when your parents place the thermometer under your tongue to check whether you have a fever or not. But if there’s any indication that your old-school thermometer is cracked or broken, wrap it up in a Ziploc bag and throw it away. Mayo Clinic is a nonprofit organization and proceeds from Web advertising help support our mission. Elsevier; 2019. https://www.clinicalkey.com. Oral – You may know this from your teenage days when your parents place the thermometer under your tongue to check whether you have a fever or not. If you have a mercury thermometer, don't throw it in the trash. Of course, before you pop a thermometer under your tongue, you’ll want to clean it. https://www.epa.gov/mercury/mercury-thermometers. Aw J. Mayo Clinic does not endorse companies or products. In a pinch? Hayward G, et al. 2020; doi:10.1016/j.jhin.2020.02.010. How do COVID-19 antibody tests differ from diagnostic tests? Most electronic thermometers have a digital display that shows you the temperature reading. This method is suitable for adults and for children above four years as they will hold the thermometer in their mouth. Infrared ear thermometers aren't recommended for newborns. Multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C), Neurosurgery during the COVID-19 pandemic, Parenting and special needs during a pandemic, Routine cancer screening during coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, Safe outdoor activities during the COVID-19 pandemic, Safety tips for returning to school during COVID-19, Stay healthy during the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic, Stay on track with medications during a pandemic, Video: Travel safely for medical care during the COVID-19 pandemic. This content does not have an English version. Mayo Clinic offers appointments in Arizona, Florida and Minnesota and at Mayo Clinic Health System locations. Direct sunlight, cold temperatures or a sweaty forehead can affect temperature readings. COVID-19 (coronavirus) in babies and children, COVID-19 (coronavirus) stigma: What it is and how to reduce it. Rinse with cool water. Earwax or a small, curved ear canal can interfere with the accuracy of a temperature taken with an infrared ear thermometer. Journal of Hospital Infection. Mercury thermometers are no longer recommended because they can break and allow mercury — which is toxic — to escape. Place the protective cover on the tip of the thermometer. Your child has a fever if the armpit temperature is over 99°F (3°C). Contact your local trash collection program to see if there's a hazardous waste collection site in your area. This content does not have an Arabic version. Here's how to clean a thermometer properly: Lather up some soap and water in your hands, scrub down the part of the thermometer you put in your mouth for 20 seconds, and rinse it off. After that, if you have rubbing alcohol on hand, wipe down the thermometer applicator with a cotton ball soaked with rubbing alcohol to sanitize it, then rinse it off again to remove the alcohol, advises Dr. Erstein. If you don’t have immediate access to a thermometer but you’re feeling, well, warm and icky, there are a few ways you can make an educated guess as to whether or not you actually have a fever. In: Feigin and Cherry's Textbook of Pediatric Infectious Diseases. Accessed Oct. 26, 2020. Using a mercury thermometer – armpit method. COVID-19 (coronavirus) drugs: Are there any that work? Pull gently back on the top of the ear to open the ear canal. Both digital and old-school glass thermometers are fine to use to measure fever. Remote thermometers can be used on the forehead (temporal artery) or the ear (tympanic). Mercury thermometers. Gently insert the thermometer until the ear canal is fully sealed off. IEEE. You need to wait 15 minutes after eating or drinking to take an oral temperature. Vicks Comfort Flex Thermometer with Fever InSight $9.98 Able to provide readings both orally and rectally, the waterproof Vicks Comfort Flex Thermometer provides readings within 8 … Lauren Krouse is a freelance writer and researcher based in North Carolina and a graduate of the MFA in Creative Nonfiction program at UNC-Wilmington. 2018; doi:10.1186/s12887-018-0994-1. Pneumonia. Shake down the mercury in a glass thermometer before placing it under the tongue. Once upon a time, mercury thermometers were the most common way to check for fever. Variations on user technique, such as holding the scanner too far away from the forehead, also may affect accuracy. The non-contact handheld cutaneous infra-red thermometer for fever screening during the COVID-19 global emergency. Touch, or contact, thermometers must touch the body in order to measure temperature. 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