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What is A Normal Body Temperature?

  • Uncategorized
  • Apr 27, 2021

The usual temperature for an average adult is around 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit or 37 degrees Celsius and it varies from person to person. Body temperature readings are normally dependent on the location where the temperature is being recorded from. A reading taken through a rectal thermometer is higher as compared to oral readings. On the other hand, armpit readings show the lower range. Normal body temperatures come with a variation in terms of a person’s age and gender, time of day when the temperature is being taken, level of activity of the specific individual, food, and beverage intake levels, the monthly menstrual cycle in women, and the location from where the temperature is being read. When the temperature of a normal human adult is read orally, it can range from 97.6 F to 99.6 F. However, different sources can provide different readings.

Researchers have studied the people’s normal body temperatures and discovered that among 40,000 people, older adults had the lowest temperature and in comparison to African-American woman, white men had lower temperatures whereas, the temperature readings for children between the ages of 3 years to 10 years ranged from 95.9 to 99.5 F. Among babies, it is normal to observe higher body temperature ranges in comparison to adults near armpit and ear measurements. For a baby in the age range of 0 to 2 years, body temperatures vary between 97.9 degrees F to 100.4 degrees F when read through a rectal thermometer. Also, there is a rise in temperature during the teething stage. A newborn’s average body temperature is 99.5 F.

A baby’s body temperature is within the higher range due to the increased body surface relative to their body weight. Another reason for higher body temperature is the increased metabolic activity that generates more heat. Since babies do not regulate temperatures as well as adult’s bodies, their tendency to not sweat more during warm weather, their bodies retain more heat. This is why it is difficult for them to cool down in case of a fever.

According to a person’s age, a temperature range of 100. 4 F to 104 F due to short-term sickness should not cause serious harm in a healthy adult. However, medical attention is needed in case of moderate to higher temperatures for those suffering from pre-existing lung or heart problems. If a person’s temperature lowers to less than 95 F or increases to above 104 F along with warning signs like headaches, confusion or shortness of breath needs medical attention, and temperatures over 105.8 F can be the reason for organ failure. Children and babies need immediate medical attention if they have a temperature lower than 102 F or in the range of 100.4 F or more.

Therefore ideally, an adult’s body temperature will vary around 98.6 F with differences arising from age, gender, physical activity levels, and health. Whereas, due to the higher body temperatures among babies, a minimal increase in temperature can be a sign of an infection. The location from where a person’s body temperature is read differs and is considered normal by doctors. Also, a slight increase or decrease in body temperature should immediately be seen by a medical expert.