Body temperature is a measure of the
body's ability to generate and get rid of heat.
When you tell your doctor about your temperature
measurement, be sure to mention whether it was taken on the forehead or in the
mouth, rectum, armpit, or ear.
| Normal: |
The average normal temperature
is 98.6°F (37°C). But "normal"
varies from person to person. Your temperature will also vary throughout the
day, usually being lowest in the early morning and rising as much as 1°F
(0.6°C) in the early evening. Your temperature may also rise by 1°F (0.6°C) or
more if you exercise on a hot day. A woman's body temperature typically varies
by 1°F (0.6°C) or more through her
menstrual cycle, peaking around the time of
Oral, ear (tympanic), rectal, or temporal artery temperature
- Fever: 100.4°F (38°C) to 103.9°F (39.9°C)
- High fever: 104°F (40°C) and higher
Armpit (axillary) temperature
- Fever: 99.4°F (37.4°C) to 102.9°F (39.4°C)
- High fever: 103°F (39.5°C) and higher
A rectal or ear temperature of
less than 97°F (36.1°C)
means a low body temperature (hypothermia).
Susan C. Kim, MD - Pediatrics
John Pope, MD - Pediatrics
January 18, 2013
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