The Best Baby Thermometers to Check for Fevers Quickly and Gently
It can be nerve-wracking to have a sick baby at home, but it's so much easier to care for them when you have a reliable baby thermometer on hand. Since newborns and infants are unable to clearly communicate exactly how they're feeling, it's important for parents and caregivers to be able to detect an elevated temperature quickly and accurately, because a fever could be a sign of an underlying illness. Fortunately, there are a variety of options among the best baby thermometers, according to pediatrician Preeti Parikh, M.D., medical director at GoodRx.
Other options for taking babies' temperatures, like temporal artery thermometers (which use infrared to measure temperatures by scanning the temporal artery across the forehead) and tympanic thermometers (which measure the temperature through the ear canal) can also offer accurate readings using less invasive measures than their traditional counterparts.
For babies under 3 months old, Parikh says a digital multi-use rectal thermometer is the best option. "If your baby is 6 months or older, you can use a tympanic thermometer, and for children of all ages, a temporal artery thermometer can also be used."
Best Baby Thermometers
- Best Affordable Baby Thermometer: Vicks Comfort Flex Thermometer With Fever Insight
- Best Rectal Baby Thermometer: FridaBaby Quick-Read Digital Rectal Thermometer
- Best Smart Baby Thermometer: Vava Smart Baby Thermometer
- Best Three-in-One Baby Thermometer: Safety 1st Rapid Read 3-in-1 Thermometer
- Best Durable Baby Thermometer: iProven Oral Thermometer
- Best Ear Baby Thermometer: Braun ThermoScan Ear Thermometer with ExacTemp Technology
- Best No-Contact Baby Thermometer: Mobi Non-Contact Digital Infrared Thermometer
- Best-Rated Baby Thermometer: Berrcom Non-Contact Infrared Thermometer
- Best Newborn Baby Thermometer: Fridababy 3-in-1 True Temperature Digital Thermometer
- Best Forehead Baby Thermometer: Exergen Temporal Artery Thermometer
What to Look for in a Baby Thermometer
An accurate thermometer is important, but so is knowing what your baby's temperature reading means, according to Parikh. "If your baby is under 2 months of age, a temperature of 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit or more is considered a serious fever, and you should call your pediatrician," she says.
"For older babies, a fever is still at a temperature of 100.4 or more, but you also should look for other symptoms, such as if the baby is more fussy, very ill, or unusually drowsy. Additionally, if your baby has a history of seizures or an immune system deficiency, you should call your pediatrician right away with any fever."