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Are ear thermometers reliable?

(17 Posts)
MerinoFroggie Mon 18-Jan-21 16:46:33

My ear thermometer must be 11 years old now. It's a brain ear thermometer.

I'm getting some funny readings over the past week. Like:
37.8 in one ear,
37. 4 in another ear,
Go back and take the temperature in the other ear and it's 37.6,
Go back to the other ear and it's 37.3

The readings are jumpy.

I got a covid test last week and it was not detected result. I am following the rules and guidelines and minimising contacts and outings and there's no body in my circle sick or a positive with covid.

I find I have some low readings in the morning about 36.7, then it rises to 37 for late morning and afternoon. Then in the evening it's sits high-ish enough about 37.6 or sometimes 37.7.

I don't feel sick. I don't have a cold. No body in my family has colds. I can't find any other pain in the body that could indicate a bacterial infection and a cause for a raised temperature.

I really don't think it's covid.

I did ovulated last weekend and I had tummy cramps. I don't know if that has anything to do with the raised temperature. I'm going going through a lot of stress in work too. Also going through other stress too. I don't know if any of that would contribute to a raised temperature.

The readings are so jumpy over the past week.

OP’s posts: |
picklemewalnuts Mon 18-Jan-21 16:49:49

Those readings are very close. Have you ever taken very frequent readings like this? I often have different readings in each ear. I'd say a difference of a point or two isn't unusual either, in subsequent readings. I've taken my temperature (hot) because I was concerned, left it a few minutes and taken it again, and it's been normal. I can flush after eating hot food, for example.

I'd be more interested in a temperature trend than a single reading.

bellropes Mon 18-Jan-21 16:50:18

They can be inaccurate, yes. I bought a forehead electronic thermometer in preparation for the pandemic, but that was totally wrong. I'm now back to using 30 year old mercury ones.

picklemewalnuts Mon 18-Jan-21 16:51:07

Ovulation does affect temperature too. That's why women with fertility issues track their temperature to identify ovulation.

Kroptopbelly Mon 18-Jan-21 16:51:15

Can I ask what you do with your temperature readings and why you check your temperature so frequently?

mummymayhem18 Mon 18-Jan-21 16:55:00

I have had the Braun Thermoscan ear thermometer since my daughter was about 6 months,she's now nearly 15. I have always found it very reliable. Like someone else has said the ear temperature between both ears can vary a bit. Also like another lady said I often hot flush 🤣. I'm 45 lol. They are definitely worth the money and has lasted well over a decade and is still going strong.

MerinoFroggie Mon 18-Jan-21 17:03:11

I check my temperature every day for fever just in case there is an infection brewing.

OP’s posts: |
Kroptopbelly Mon 18-Jan-21 17:04:37

Do you have an immunity issue ?

MerinoFroggie Mon 18-Jan-21 17:11:17

I don't think I have an immunity issue. Unless there is something wrong that I don't know about.

I am late 30s, so maybe flushes are more likely. I ha e to work with a mask on all day and in the evening ls the heat is blasted on on top of it and I can sometimes feel my head melting and I am so happy just to get out from work and into the fresh air and go home.

OP’s posts: |
Oneearringlost Mon 18-Jan-21 17:16:09

These are small variations.
Have you changed the batteries and do you use change the ear guard each time?

MerinoFroggie Mon 18-Jan-21 17:17:34

Yes, the battery went dead last week and I changed the batteries new ones. They are pound shop batteries.

I don't change the ear cover every time.

OP’s posts: |
Toddlerteaplease Mon 18-Jan-21 17:27:39

No, I'm a nurse and we do t use them.

Bubbinsmakesthree Mon 18-Jan-21 17:38:50

When I am checking temperatures if it is a bit high or low I will check it again a couple of times in quick succession. It usually bounces round by at least 0.5 degrees. Normally if someone has a fever I get a consistently raised reading, not just a quirky odd one.

SaturdayAfternoon Mon 18-Jan-21 17:40:52


No, I'm a nurse and we do t use them.

You don’t use ear thermometers? What do you use? Every hospital stay I’ve been to has involved ear thermometers.

MerinoFroggie Mon 18-Jan-21 18:45:50

I'm finished work now and I'm home and checked my temperature. It was
37.7 in both ears, then it was
37.6 in both ears, then it was
37.5, then

OP’s posts: |
soundofsilence1 Mon 18-Jan-21 18:54:57

Ear thermometers read high and you also need to make sure they are properly inserted. The most accurate thermometer is a rectal one shock

picklemewalnuts Mon 18-Jan-21 19:49:38

So that's very normal, then. Limit yourself to one reading a day. Tops. You're fine.

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