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How to choose a thermometer?

How to choose a thermometer?

Any pharmacy now offers several types of medical thermometers: mercury, electronic, infrared, with the latter being contact and non-contact. There are also thermometers “disguised” under the pacifier.

Another option – forehead temperature strips. To make the right choice, you need to know the advantages and disadvantages of each type.

So let’s try to figure it out without haste.

Types of thermometersPriceMeasurement accuracyMeasuring speedReliabilityLife time
Mercury++
Electronic+++++
Ear / Head+++
Thermal strips++
Contactless+++

Dignity. Older as the world, mercury thermometers have a very high measurement accuracy. You can be sure: nothing can prevent these devices from producing the correct result.

Neither illumination, nor humidity, nor temperature will influence it. The permissible measurement error in any case will not exceed 0.1 °. With it, you can measure the temperature both under the arm, and rectally, and orally.

For children, thermometers are produced in which a tube with mercury is placed in a shock-resistant casing. The shelf life of the device is unlimited. By undoubted advantages should be attributed to the price.

If not original, you can keep a penny.

Disadvantages. As much as a mercury thermometer is accurate, so is it in most cases fragile.

Sometimes even an impact-resistant casing does not prevent breakages. What to say about the ordinary copies, “dressed” in a thin glass!

Careless movement – and it is shattered, and dozens, if not hundreds of small mercury balls scatter along the floor. At the sight of this metal placer, even experienced moms become uncomfortable, and they begin to call in different instances, demanding the disposal of the contents of the crashed thermometer. In addition, in order to obtain a reliable result, the child must remain motionless for at least 8 minutes.

You must agree that far from all small fidgets are capable of such a feat.

Dignity. Temperature is measured by a special thermal sensor, which is built into the tip of the device. There are more places where it can be used to measure the temperature than in the case of its mercury counterpart.

The groin and elbow bend are added to the above places. The result becomes visible quickly enough – after 3, maximum 5 minutes. And there are models that store it in the memory of the device.

The digital thermometer is not afraid of blows, the batteries usually last for several years.

For convenience, many electronic thermometers can be with a flexible tip. Another modern technology is gold-plated tips.

They are designed for those who suffer from allergies to nickel (usually this metal is used in the manufacture of thermometers). Especially for babies, they release digital thermometers in the form of pacifiers.

There is an opinion that such thermometers, to put it mildly, are inaccurate. Mothers often complain that they measured the temperature until they heard a beep, and the readings were wrong.

In fact, the problem is not that the device is “lying”, but that mother did not read the instructions carefully. Squeak, which many for some reason take for a signal about the end of temperature measurement, as a rule, warns only that the procedure is close to completion, but not yet completed. To make the results accurate, hold the thermometer for at least another couple of minutes.

It should be remembered that you need to measure body temperature with almost any digital thermometer within 3 minutes.

And finally, such an electronic meter can safely take with you on the road: a special case will protect the device from damage.

Disadvantages. Electronic thermometers cost, if not in the tens, then at least several times more expensive than mercury thermometers.

As for the device in the form of a nipple, it is not at all necessarily such, if I may say so, the baby will like the nipple. No one can guarantee that he will not spit it out.

And the price of a similar original device bites.

Dignity. Such devices measure the temperature in seconds.

The sensors determine the degrees of the intensity of infrared radiation emanating from the eardrum (ear thermometers) or from the forehead and temporal region (forehead thermometers). In order not to damage the ear canal, the ear instruments have a soft nozzle, so they are completely safe. And the “forehead” models can measure the temperature, even when the baby is sleeping.

To do this, simply lean the device against the forehead of the child. The baby will not even notice the touch of the thermometer.

The family of infrared thermometers also includes thermal strips, temperature-sensitive films and non-contact thermometers. With a non-contact device it is convenient to measure the temperature of a newborn, since it is enough just to bring the thermometer to the baby’s head at a distance of about 2 cm.

The measurement result appears on the display in just a few moments.

Disadvantages. In this case, the speed of measurement is at the expense of accuracy. The latter can be up to 0.4 ° C.

Such devices have the largest measurement error. And you can’t call them cheap.

In addition, such devices are highly specialized: they can not measure rectal temperature. And the ear thermometer can give a very significant error if the child has otitis.

Thermal strips and heat-sensitive films at a high temperature just change color, it is impossible to find out exactly how many degrees it “ran”. In addition, they are influenced by many circumstances: light, the intensity of sweating in a child, how tightly the strip or film fits to the skin.

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