Question: What is a normal temperature for a baby?
Answer: The temperature range that is considered normal for babies is anywhere between 97 degrees and 100.3 degrees. 100.4 degrees or higher is considered a fever. There is a common misconception that 98.6 degrees is considered normal and anything above it is considered a fever. A 98.6 degree temperature is more of an average, not a set number.
Fevers can be tricky things. The majority of the time, a fever comes around when a child is trying to fight off an illness of some sort. Fevers are a good sign that the immune system is working properly, but even still, they shouldn’t be ignored or brushed off, as the body occasionally needs help lowering them back down to normal limits. 100.4 degrees or higher is considered a fever. A 98.6 degree temperature is more of an average, not a set number.
Fun fact: a few weeks ago when I was at my baby’s four-month checkup, the nurse routinely took my baby’s temperature and it read exactly 98.6 degrees. She said, “It’s been awhile since I got that exact number!”
When a baby is younger than six months, a call to the pediatrician is recommended right when baby reaches 100.4 degrees. The recommendation for older babies and children when it comes to calling the doctor is 103 degrees. They will then advise medication or even have you bring in the child for observation.
When it comes to physically taking babe’s temperature there are several factors to consider. The most accurate way to take a temperature is a rectal reading, but that isn’t always the most practical. Next would be an ear reading, then an oral reading. The least accurate (yet most popular method used at home) method is an armpit reading. This should be taken into consideration when trying to get a good read from baby because though possibly the most convenient, the armpit reads tend to be lower than the actual temperature of the child.
A great solution when it comes to convenience and accuracy? The Fever Frida Thermomonitor! This is a new technological tool for reading temperatures. A patch that is hooked up to Bluetooth is placed beneath baby’s arm and takes his/her temperature every four seconds. It will then alert your phone –via an app- if the temperature spikes. This is especially great for sick babies while they sleep because it gives peace of mind without needing to wake up the baby to continually check on temperature.