Normal body temperature
Most people think a normal body temperature is an oral temperature (by mouth) of 37°C . This is an average of normal body temperatures. Your normal temperature may actually be 0.6°C or more above or below this. Also, your normal temperature changes by as much as 0.6°C during the day, depending on how active you are and the time of day. Body temperature is very sensitive to hormone levels. So a woman’s temperature may be higher or lower when she is ovulating or having her menstrual period.
A rectal temperature reading will be a little higher than an oral reading.
A temperature taken in the armpit will be a little lower than an oral reading. The most accurate way to measure temperature is to take a rectal reading.
In most adults, a fever starts at an oral or armpit (axillary) temperature of 37.6°C or a rectal temperature of 38.1°C. A child has a fever when his or her rectal temperature is 38°C or higher or armpit temperature is 37.6°C or higher. Infants less than 3 months old with a rectal temperature of 38°C or higher or an armpit temperature of 37.3°C or higher should be seen by a doctor.
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