Ear Thermometer Buying Guide

When toying with the idea of buying an ear thermometer, it is important that the device you choose provides accurate results and has temperature readings that are easy to understand.
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Use behind ear thermometer to determine body temperature
Did You Know?
Researchers have concluded that precise accuracy is not possible with ear thermometer. But at the same time, these instruments are clinically proven to give more accurate results than armpit thermometers.
Ear thermometers are commonly used to record body temperature of children. One has to simply place the tip of the thermometer in the ear canal for a few seconds to obtain the temperature reading. This is one of the fastest way to gauge body temperature. The infrared sensors of the device help measure the temperature accurately. With the advancement in technology, newer designs of ear thermometers have evolved, adding to the confusion of the buyer. Here are some factors that you need to consider when buying a ear thermometer.

Check for Features
Find out the features the thermometer is offering. For instance, it is not possible to take the reading at night, unless the device is equipped with a backlight. You don't have to switch on the room light to note the thermometer reading if it has an illuminated display.

Also, make sure that the temperature readings are simple enough for you to immediately gauge whether the body temperature has increased. For instance, the general public is often unaware of the normal body temperature, and hence, they are unable to gauge the severity of fever by simply viewing the body temperature shown on the display screen of the thermometer. To resolve these issues, some thermometers are equipped with color screens that change to green, yellow, and red to indicate normal, marginally elevated temperature, and high fever, respectively.

Choose the Right Type
Usually, the probe tip of the thermometer is introduced into the ear canal to take the temperature readings. However, this can be a cause of discomfort for children, especially when they are suffering from an ear infection. Keeping the comfort factor in mind, the 'Touch Behind Ear' thermometers have made a foray and changed the way an ear thermometer is used. These new innovative devices no longer require any kind of insertion, yet, provide accurate results. One has to simply place the instrument for a few seconds at the rear of the earlobe to get accurate body temperature. With these devices, you can check your child's body temperature, even when he is fast asleep.

Senses Body Temperature Quickly
These instruments are designed to provide temperature readings within a few seconds. So, make sure the instrument you buy does not take several seconds to gauge body temperature. Most thermometers available today display the temperature reading in one second. Thus, the device you buy should be able to provide the temperature reading instantly.

Know the Usage
Although the thermometer is easy to use, many are ignorant about how to place the device in the ear canal or the spot behind the earlobes. When the device is not properly placed, its accuracy is not up to the mark, despite the device being capable enough to give accurate temperature readings. So, consult your family physician or an ENT specialist, to know the right way of using ear thermometer.

Some of the popular models of ear thermometers are as follows:
  • V980 Vicks Behind Ear Gentle Touch Thermometer
  • Braun Thermoscan IRT4520 Ear Thermometer
  • Omron MC-514 Ear Thermometer
  • Mabis Healthcare Instant Ear Thermometer
  • Lumiscope 2215 Instant Read Digital Ear Thermometer
You can buy any of these that suits your budget and convenience. However, make sure it does not cause any inconvenience to your child, when recording his temperature.

There have been reports of ear thermometer making a beeping sound (after the temperature is recorded), which may awaken a sleeping child. So, as a parent, check whether you are comfortable with the beeping noise. In general, ear thermometers are safe and provide results quickly, but if you are not satisfied with its accuracy, opting for a temporal artery thermometer is recommended.
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Published: February 19, 2014
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our house uses it - tara ann o,hare [March 24, 2014]