How to Use Rectal Thermometer

How to Use Rectal Thermometer

Having a thermometer at home is crucial since it helps monitor the temperature of a kid in case they have a fever. Traditionally, we tend to take the temperature through the mouth, under the arm, and even on the thigh. But, there is another reliable method of taking the baby's temperature with the use of a rectal thermometer.

What is a rectal thermometer?

This is the thermometer inserted in the rectum through the anus to take the child's temperatures. Although this method may be a bit uncomfortable for the child, it is recommended since it gives more accurate readings.

Cautions to take before using It

#1. Wash the thermometer

Keep in mind that you are inserting the thermometer on the internal parts of the child. Considering it is bound to have some germs or even infections, ensure to thoroughly clean and disinfect it. Follow the manufacturer's cleaning procedures for before and after use of the device.

#2. Don't mix the thermometers

If you plan to use digital thermometers to take the baby's temperature through both the rectum and the mouth, make sure to have two different thermometers for these areas. Label and store them separately too.

#3. Lubricate the tip

It is crucial to lubricate the tip of the thermometer using petroleum jelly to enable it to have a smooth penetration.

How to use rectal thermometer


Clean the thermometer first

There are various methods to use when cleaning your thermometer before use. You can use alcohol wipes, or disposable cotton balls dipped in alcohol. Keep the thermometer to dry completely before using it.


Apply petroleum jelly

We apply the petroleum jelly on the rectal thermometer to enable it to have a smooth penetration without hurting the child. Note that the petroleum jelly is applied at the shiny tip of the device. The best petroleum jelly to use are the water-based jellies such as coconut oil. Also, do not apply too much balm on the tip.


Lay the baby down

Find a comfortable position for the baby to lie in and ensure it will be firm as well. So, find a calm room and put the baby facing down, remove the bottom clothes, and spread the butts.


Insert the thermometer

When inserting the thermometer through the anus, make sure only to put in about an inch or less. This means that the shiny part should be the only one inside.


Keep the child steady

The kid may struggle to get up or even remove the foreign item inserted in the body, but ensure this doesn't happen as it can interfere with the readings. The baby may also accidentally push the device further in the body. So, after inserting the thermometer, hold the baby firmly to prevent it from moving.


Wait until it beeps

Rectal thermometer works just like the digital ones. Therefore, you should keep the device in the rectal until it beeps. Ones it beeps remove it and read the baby's temperature.


Rectal thermometers are super easy to use as the rest of digital thermometers. Follow the manufacture's instruction when cleaning and store the thermometer in a clean, dry place. In case you find the kid's fever is too high, consult a doctor immediately. Note that the rectal thermometer can be used to measure the temperatures of kids of all ages.

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