Expert Tips: Taking a Rectal Temp on a Baby

As parents, taking care of our little ones can be nerve-wracking! One of the most important things we must do as caregivers is to regularly monitor their temperature. Although rectal temperatures can feel invasive and uncomfortable for both the parent and child, it remains to be one of the most accurate ways of checking core body temperature. That's why we've put together expert tips that will hopefully help alleviate some anxiety around this procedure.

Expert Tips: Taking a Rectal Temp on a Baby

Preparing for the task

Before you begin, ensure that you have all necessary materials within reach:

  • Digital thermometer
  • Petroleum jelly or water-based lubricant
  • Disposable gloves (to avoid cross-contamination)
  • Baby wipes or cloth soaked in warm water

Also prepare yourself mentally by taking deep breaths and reminding yourself why it needs to be done. Remember, your baby’s health comes before any momentary discomfort.

Choosing your Thermometer

Gone are the days where rectal thermometers were more like harpoons than tools for measurement. Nowadays, there is a plethora available with varying designs specifically catered towards infants such as:

Pacifier thermometer

This type resembles regular pacifiers but also functions as an infant thermometer when inserted into their mouth.

Forehead thermometer

Place this non-invasive gadget onto your child's forehead while holding still until it buzzes indicate temp taken

While these options may seem easier in theory, a digital rectal thermometer remains second-to-none in terms of accuracy because they measure internal body temperature rather than surface-level reading from oral or skin contact measurements.

Therefore for younger babies aged between 0 - 3 months, using a traditional rectal digital should be considered so as not to compromise accuracy levels.

Location & Positioning

To take an accurate reading, steer clear from doing so right after meals otherwise recording may come at higher temps due to food being digested.

It is also essential to choose a spot with good lighting, ensuring that you can clearly see what you're doing.

Ensure your baby has not just soiled diapers or gas rumblings, as this may cause discomfort and make them fussy.

After cleaning the rectal area gently, apply lubricant onto the tip of the thermometer’s probe by dipping it into petroleum jelly or water-based lubricant. This ensures smooth entry while preventing injury from friction.

With one hand supporting your baby's legs, insert the thermometer about half an inch (1.27 cm) inside their anus at a 90-degree angle towards their belly button. Hold in place until it beeps signaling an accurate temperature reading has been taken

Reading & Recording

Upon completion of procedure check for any shaking hands then proceed to remove device noting down recorded results whether digitally or writing in notebook for reference later on when needed.

Key Take Aways:

Overall taking rectal temp on your baby isn't rocket science but instead patience , calm environments and readical approach needs to be adapted trying out others types being alternates depending factor such as age bracket .

Always remember : Accurate Measuring = Early intervention possible !

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