Baby Body Temperature

Dr. Sumaiya Khan Mar 12, 2019
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What is the normal body temperature for a baby? How do I know if my toddler doesn't have fever. If you are confused about the temperature range, then read this write-up.
There is always some amount of anxiety associated with a child's health at all times. A new mother always tends to become anxious when her baby's temperature shoots up. As such, a fever can occur at any age but when a baby gets a fever, then a mother tends to become very worried.
However, there is never a final temperature that a person needs to be wary about, but there is normally a range within which the readings should fall. However, the daily variation in children less than six months is minimal.
The body normally gets a little warm because of any physical activity, any kind of strong emotion, eating, heavy clothing, increase in room temperature, and an increase in environmental temperature or humidity.

Normal Range

The temperature of a baby varies throughout the course of the day. The temperature is usually lowest in the morning when the baby just wakes up, and may be slightly higher than normal immediately after a meal.
However, the normal range is said to be anywhere around 37.0 °C or 98.6 °F. A variation of a degree or two is acceptable. Sometimes, it may be slightly higher than normal if the baby is overdressed.

Low Temperature

It is relatively rare for a baby to have an abnormally low body temperature. Normally, the baby's body is not properly equipped to deal with a condition where the temperature dips. Thus, if a baby has a temperature that falls below 97 or 96 °F, then it could mean that it's organs aren't functioning properly.
It is difficult in certain serious infections for the baby to maintain a constant temperature and if it starts falling suddenly, then the organs could stop functioning, and there is a chance that the baby could go into a shock. This is a serious condition, and thus, needs to be dealt immediately.

High Temperature

If the reading is anywhere between 97.6 and 99.6 °F, it is considered to be the core body temperature, that is, the one at which all the organs function optimally. However, even if you do not have an instrument to measure the temperature of your baby, you can see if it's body is warm to touch.
In such cases, you can also check if the baby is showing any other abnormal signs, like vomiting, kicking, crying, irritability, decrease in appetite, etc. However, one easy and quick way of measuring is by using an ear probe. If your infant has a temperature that is above 99.6 °F, then you need to let your pediatrician know.
However, you also need to understand that fever is your body's way of fighting infection. However, raised temperature in the body can also signify the presence of an infection in the body. At times, activities like teething, sudden changes in the environment, etc., can also lead to a fever.
This was all about the normal body temperature of infants, and what any kind of deviation from this range signifies. However, one needn't get very worked up if a baby has a slightly higher temperature than normal, because, as mentioned earlier, it could be a sign of the body trying to fight off some infection.
However, if the condition persists for long, and if the baby also shows other symptoms like excess vomiting and loss of appetite, then it is best to visit a doctor, and get the condition diagnosed and treated.
Disclaimer: This is for informative purposes only, and should not be used as a replacement for expert medical advice.