Add these numbers to oral and axillary temperature readings for the most accurate reading. But the temperature readings vary depending on which one you use, and you need an accurate body temperature to determine if a fever is present. If a temperature is taken rectally, the results will be about 0.5 to 0.7° higher. The normal oral temperature is 35.8–37.3ºC (OER #1) or 96.4–99.1ºF. Here's what you need to know about possible causes and when to worry. Searches were carried out in MEDLINE, CINAHL, and … Normal body temperature and the effects of age, sex, ambient temperature and body mass index on normal oral temperature: a prospective, comparative study Int J Nurs Stud 2009 These subtleties must be kept in mind when interpreting the results of a thermometer reading. You'll need an oral thermometer, used in the mouth. What is the Normal Body Temperature for Adults? The normal range discussed above refers to temperatures taken with oral thermometers. You can take a temperature using the mouth (oral), anus (rectal), armpit (axillary), or ear (tympanic). Temperature in the mouth (oral) is about 36.8°C (98.2°F) Temperature under the arm (axillary) is about 36.5°C (97.7°F) Temperature in the anus (rectum/rectal), vagina, or in the ear (otic) is about 37.5°C (99.5°F) At What Temperature … If you've been eating or drinking, wait 30 minutes before you take a temperature by mouth. An oral thermometer is … Turn on the digital thermometer. Oral and axillary temperature readings are about ½° to 1°F (.3°C to .6°C) below rectal. Medical research … Older subjects have mean oral body temperatures lower than 98.6 degrees F. Relatively few even achieve this temperature. The Harvard Medical School also states that fever is when a body’s temperature reaches 100.4 °F (38 °C) or higher (for adults). A systematic review of data was performed. A lower-than-normal body temperature can occur due to environmental or medical conditions. New research finds that the average human body temperature of Americans has dropped. 5 Possible Causes of Lower-Than-Normal Body Temperature | Livestrong.com Close your mouth around the thermometer for the recommended amount of time or until the thermometer beep indicates it's done. Place the thermometer tip under your tongue. Oral temperature measurement is common and reliable because it is close to the sublingual artery. In nursing home residents, the oldest were coldest and failed to demonstrate a diurnal rise in body temperature. Using a tympanic thermometer (for adults and children over 2 years old) The “normal” body temperature of 98.6°F is actually not so normal. Normal oral, rectal, tympanic and axillary body temperature in adult men and women: a systematic literature review The purpose of this study was to investigate normal body temperature in adult men and women. Temperatures taken under the arm usually generate results that are 0.3 to 0.4° lower. 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