Different Types Of Thermometers And Their Advantages

Thermometers And Their Advantages

Different Types Of Thermometers And Their Advantages

The thermometer is among the most extensively used medical equipment worldwide. It’s a device to measure body temperature and help in diagnosis of patients. We have been using thermometers with mercury for decades and they are still in use but there are other types available as well. In fact, several different types are available to cater diverse purposes and environments. They are fit for a variety of applications, including medical, scientific and engineering  

We however will focus only on those thermometers most widely used in medical application. We should know the traditional alcohol or mercury-based instrument are still around going as strong as ever purely for being features and convenience they deliver. At present, the trend of digital products is growing and thermometers too are not exception. They are value addition in true sense for sure.   

Advantages of Thermometers

  • Easy to use
  • Give accurate readings
  • Help measure the body temperature in a simple way
  • Available for use at home and hospitals alike
  • Ensure right diagnosis

Different types of thermometers

In general, there are five types of thermometers to be used for medical purposes. They all are easily available and can add value in own unique ways.

They include – 

1#    Digital thermometer

These thermometers are growing in uses and popularity by the day and deliver a range of benefits to users. They use electronic heat sensors and display the reading on a small LCD screen on the end side. They are used very much in the same was as we do those mercury or alcohol thermometers – you can insert it under the armpit or tongue or inside the rectum.    


Such thermometers deliver a range of advantages with measuring body temperature. First of all, they are inexpensive and secondly, easy to use. They give accurate readings and have zero to little maintenance. However, they are battery-powered so there is always a chance of battering running out of power. And you don’t have to drop it else it might get damaged.  

2#    Tympanic thermometer

As the name suggests, this type of thermometers are inserted into the ear to measure body temperature. Since they are also digital in nature, you can expect them to deliver accuracy of reading and convenience of use. They are also known as ear thermometer and considered fit in cases where patients are in ICU (intensive care units) or on anaesthesia post-surgery. 

It’s quite clear that this type of thermometers are fit for those patients critically ill or not conscious at the time of measuring body temperature. Doctors use this type of device to take temperature in quick time and even without causing any disturbance or pain. They are easily available on stores both offline and online.  

3#    Temporal Artery thermometer

Did you know that single-use thermometers also exist? Well, they do and are known as temporal artery or forehead tape thermometer. Naturally, they will be use-and-throw type of product fit for just single use and it’s easy to carry anywhere. They have a mild adhesive on one side which helps the device to get taped to the forehead in an easy manner.

Despite all the talk, this type of thermometers are not used much these days as their readings are inaccurate. Plus, they are not easy to keep stuck to the forehead which makes them of little worth beyond a point. That they exist and even used sporadically suggests the types of thermometers we have with us.

4#    Mercury/alcohol thermometer

These thermometers are perhaps the most popular and also the most extensively used from the given lot here. They are available for use at home and hospitals alike, and no first-aid box is complete without them. They are traditional thermometers and use either mercury or alcohol sealed inside a glass tube. The body heat makes the liquid inside the tube to expand and go up and tell about body temperature.   

Further, a mercury thermometer can be placed under the tongue, in the armpit or inside the rectum, which makes them convenient and easy to use. They are inexpensive, easy to read and reliable. More so, they need very little maintenance and you can keep them submerged in liquids with no harms. However, they can break easily and the mercury used in them can be dangerous if the tube cracks.   

5#    Infrared thermometer

It’s possible to use infrared technology in measuring body temperature in a quick and accurate manner. This is exactly what infrared thermometers do and bring a great deal of convenience and ease to users. They can measure the temperature in less than 1 second, which is great. Plus, they are fit to be used in several other settings such as food preparation and automobiles etc. You can visit online stores and buy them with ease. This is how you get different types of thermometer for measuring the body temperature.