UNDERSTANDING YOUR BODY TEMPERATURE

Ideally, the average human temperature is 37.0 °C (98.6 °F), though it varies among individuals. However, no healthy person always has exactly the same temperature at every moment of the day. The body temperature can either be high, warm and some times, cold. A high body temperature may not mean that the person is sick.

Body temperature can be defined as the average temperature of the human body. In humans, this average temperature is estimated at around 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit (°F)  or 37°C, although, this can vary depending on time of day, typically by 0.5°C in the evening compared to the morning.

Body temperature is a measure of your body’s ability to make and get rid of heat. Certain factors can be responsible for a change in the body temperature of a person. These factors may include age, heart rate, body size and type, as well as the loss of body heat through metabolic processes (radiation, convection, and evaporation of sweat and ventilation, and humidity response to heat stress).

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A rise in your temperature may be caused by fever or any other ailment. Pyrogens, chemicals that flow in the bloodstream, cause fevers. When your body temperature rises because of an infection, it’s called a fever. Fevers are caused by chemicals called pyrogens flowing in the bloodstream. When pyrogens bind to certain receptors in the hypothalamus, body temperature rises.

What Is A Normal Body Temperature

Basically, a normal body temperature is about 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit (°F) or 37 degrees Celsius (°C). Your temperature often varies from 1 to 2 °F or ½ to 1 °C. Your temperature is usually lower in the morning and increases during the day. It reaches its high in the late afternoon or evening.

How to use a digital thermometer

You can get fast and accurate readings with digital thermometers. You can use a digital thermometer in 3 ways: Make sure you read through the insructions on how to use.

  • Oral (in the mouth).
  • Rectal (in the bottom).
  • Axillary (under the arm).

Do not use the same thermometer for both oral and rectal readings. Be sure to label your thermometer either “oral” or “rectal” to know the difference.

Taking your temperature orally with a digital thermometer

  1. Wash your hands with soap and warm water.
  2. Use a clean thermometer, one that has been washed in cold water, cleaned with rubbing alcohol, and then rinsed to remove the alcohol.
  3. Do not eat or drink anything for at least 5 minutes before you take your temperature. You should keep your mouth closed during this time.
  4. Place the thermometer tip under the tongue.
  5. Hold the thermometer in the same spot for about 40 seconds.
  6. Readings will continue to increase and the F (or C) symbol will flash during measurement.
  7. Usually, the thermometer will make a beeping noise when the final reading is done. If you are keeping track, record the temperature and the time.
  8. Rinse thermometer in cold water, clean it with alcohol, and rinse again.

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