Body Temperature

Body temperature is a measure of the body's ability to generate and get rid of heat. The average normal body temperature is generally accepted as 98.6°F (37°C).

There are four main methods of measuring body temperature: oral (by mouth), rectal (by bottom), ear (tympanic), and forehead (temporal).

Body temperature can be affected by many different things, including:

  • Age: Babies and young children have a higher body temperature than adults. This is because their metabolism is faster and they produce more heat.
  • Activity level: People who are more active tend to have a higher body temperature than those who are not. This is because the physical activity requires the body to generate more heat.
  • Time of day: Body temperature is usually highest in the late afternoon and early evening and lowest in the early morning.
  • Environment: Hot weather or being in a hot environment can raise body temperature.
  • Illness: Fever is one of the most common ways that illness can affect body temperature. Other illnesses, such as thyroid problems, can also cause changes in body temperature.

There are many different factors that can affect body temperature, so it is important to take measurements under similar conditions to ensure accuracy.

For most people, taking their temperature orally (by mouth) is the simplest and most convenient method. However, it is important to note that oral readings can be affected by many factors, such as eating or drinking hot or cold beverages, smoking, and having a stuffy nose.

For the most accurate reading, it is best to wait at least 30 minutes after eating or drinking before taking your temperature.

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