Last updated: August 4, 2021

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Welcome to our large forehead thermometer test 2021. Here we present all the forehead thermometers that we have tested in detail. We have compiled detailed background information and added a summary of customer reviews on the internet.

In this way, we would like to make your purchase decision easier and help you find the forehead thermometer that is best suited to you.

You will also find answers to frequently asked questions in our guide. If available, we also offer interesting test videos. Furthermore, you will also find some important information on this page that you should definitely pay attention to if you want to buy a forehead thermometer.




Summary

  • Forehead thermometers can be used as an alternative to conventional contact thermometers for taking fever. Infrared technology enables a very quick measurement on the easily accessible forehead.
  • But not only body temperature can be measured with a forehead thermometer. Often, it can also be used to measure ambient and object temperatures.
  • A basic distinction is made between a forehead thermometer with contact and a contactless forehead thermometer. The non-contact model makes it easier to measure the temperature of sleeping or restless children.

The best Forehead Thermometer: Our Picks

Guide: Questions you should ask yourself before buying a forehead thermometer

Who is a forehead thermometer suitable for?

A forehead thermometer is generally suitable for every household. Because whether small or large children, young or old adults, anyone can get a fever.

For families with children, owning a thermometer is especially important. The forehead thermometer is suitable here because it can be used with children of all ages.

It is somewhat less accurate than contact thermometers, but it is practical for quick measurements in between or at night, as it is easy to use.

So that sleeping children do not have to be woken up to take their temperature, a forehead thermometer can be used without contact. (Image source: unsplash.com / Peter Oslanec)

It can also be used for adults and can usually be used for ambient and object temperatures in addition to measuring body temperature.

Due to the diverse areas of application, the forehead thermometer is a true multifunctional device for everyday life.

Pet owners can also use forehead thermometers for their loved ones. However, as the deviations between rectal and forehead measurements can be quite large here, a special forehead thermometer for animals or a normal contact thermometer should be used.

How does a forehead thermometer work?

When measuring fever, a distinction must be made between core and surface temperature. The core temperature of the mucous membranes can be recorded by a rectal measurement. The surface temperature, for example, can be measured on the forehead.

The surface temperature measured with the forehead thermometer is composed of the radiation temperature of the body and the ambient temperature.

With the help of the forehead thermometer, the infrared rays emitted by the body are converted into heat units. This is an infrared measurement.

What does a forehead thermometer cost?

A simple forehead thermometer is available for as little as €10. There are also inexpensive contactless models. However, these forehead thermometers are not combination devices, i.e. the measurement can only be taken on the forehead and not additionally in the ear.

On the contrary, with the help of more complex forehead thermometers, measurements can be taken on the forehead and in the ear.

More expensive models from 20€ also often have the option of measuring the body temperature both contactlessly and with contact. They are a true all-rounder.

Type Price
Simple forehead thermometer from 10 €
Complex forehead thermometer with better features from 20 €

What alternatives are there for a forehead thermometer?

There are different types and various thermometers to measure fever. In any case, the causes as well as the solutions of fever in babies should be clarified as soon as they show increased temperature.

Besides using a forehead thermometer, a fever can also be taken using a contact thermometer, ear thermometer or dummy thermometer. Here is more information about these alternatives:

Contact thermometer

Electronic contact thermometers are nowadays digital thermometers. The use of a mercury-based measurement is not recommended for health reasons.

Measurements using the contact thermometer are possible in three places:

  • Rectal
  • Axial
  • Sublingual

The rectal measurement is the most accurate. It should be used especially for newborns. The sublingual measurement also gives relatively accurate results.

When measuring under the armpits, the measured value may deviate by up to two degrees.

Did you know that you should not compare measurements between different parts of the body? Since rectal, axial and sublingual body temperatures are different, no comparisons can be made between them.

Ear thermometer

Just like the forehead thermometer, the ear thermometer measures body temperature using infrared measurement. The ear thermometer is inserted into the ear and then measures the temperature at the eardrum.

Ear thermometers must be used and cleaned with hygienic attachments because of the insertion. In the case of otitis media, a different thermometer must be used.

There are also combined ear and forehead thermometers. With these models, the forehead thermometer can be converted into an ear thermometer by attaching an attachment.

As with all ear thermometers in general, measurement in the ear is only possible from the third month.

Dummy thermometer

The dummy thermometer is used to measure the body temperature in the front of the mouth. While this measurement is comfortable and non-invasive for the child, it brings with it some problems: the temperature in the front of the mouth is lower than the actual body temperature.

However, inaccurate measurement results are mainly due to an insufficiently long measurement process. Some children resist the dummy thermometer and do not keep their mouths closed for two to five minutes as prescribed.

Due to the inaccuracy of the measurement results, another clinical thermometer should be used. For restless children for whom a rectal measurement is not possible, a contactless forehead thermometer can be a suitable alternative for a dummy thermometer.

Decision: What types of forehead thermometers are there and which one is right for you?

There are two types of forehead thermometers:

  • Contact forehead thermometer
  • Non-contact forehead thermometer

The distinguishing criterion is therefore whether the forehead thermometer touches the forehead or not.

Non-contact measurements are taken a few centimetres in front of the forehead. In contrast, the device is placed directly on the forehead in the case of forehead thermometers with contact.

There are combination devices that allow measurements with and without contact and thus combine the advantages of both devices.

What distinguishes a forehead thermometer with contact and what are its advantages and disadvantages?

A forehead thermometer with contact is placed on the forehead of the person or rolled lightly over the forehead. Depending on the model, the measurement can also be taken at the temples.

Measuring with a contact forehead thermometer is more accurate than measuring with a non-contact forehead thermometer.

However, only the surface temperature of the body is measured and not the core temperature. Touch forehead thermometers can be used on children of all ages and are also easy to use.

Because they touch the skin, they need to be cleaned regularly after each use. The measurement time is slightly longer than with non-contact forehead thermometers, but still faster than with regular contact thermometers.

Differences in measurements can also occur here.

Advantages
  • More accurate measurement
  • For children of all ages
  • Easy to use
Disadvantages
  • Needs cleaning
  • Longer measurement time
  • Variations

What are the features of a contactless forehead thermometer and what are its advantages and disadvantages?

A contactless forehead thermometer is measured by placing the device in front of the person's forehead.

The respective manufacturers provide detailed information on the distance and location at which the device must be positioned. This thermometer measures the temperature without touching the forehead using infrared technology.

The forehead thermometer without touching can also be applied to sleeping persons as well as for measuring room temperature and objects.

Moreover, it does not need to be cleaned as it does not come into contact with the person.

The measurement results are less accurate than with other measurement methods. This means that an infrared forehead thermometer is not suitable for differentiation in the area of high fever.

Advantages
  • Can also be used on sleeping persons
  • No cleaning necessary
  • Various areas of application
Disadvantages
  • Measurement somewhat less accurate than with contact thermometers
  • Not for differentiation in very high fever

Buying criteria: Use these factors to compare and evaluate forehead thermometers

In the following, we will show you which criteria you can use to decide between the different forehead thermometers.

You can use the following criteria to compare forehead thermometers with each other:

  • Range of application
  • Measuring accuracy
  • Measuring time
  • Memory capacity
  • Fever alarm
  • Ease of use

In the following, we will explain what these individual criteria mean exactly.

Areas of application

Many forehead thermometers are not only suitable for measuring body temperature. Common areas of application for forehead thermometers are:

  • Body (forehead, temple)
  • Surfaces (objects, food, liquids)
  • Environment (room temperature)

A contactless forehead thermometer can also be used to measure the temperature of liquids such as baby milk. (Image source: pexels.com / rawpixel)

Measurement accuracy

The sensitivity of the sensor varies between different manufacturers and models. Depending on the unit of measurement selected, the deviation should be a maximum of +/- 0.3 degrees Celsius or +/- 0.4 degrees Fahrenheit.

In general, however, forehead thermometers are less accurate than conventional contact thermometers. Therefore, if a high fever is suspected, a doctor should always be consulted for a check.

Measuring time

The measuring time of forehead thermometers is usually only a few seconds. They can therefore be used perfectly even with restless infants.

Did you know that a forehead thermometer should be switched on for a few minutes before use? This allows it to adapt to the prevailing room temperature, which is important for the most accurate measurement result.

Memory capacity

In order to be able to follow the temperature curve better, the measurement results can be stored internally in some devices. The number of measurement results to be stored (usually between 10 and 30) is particularly relevant here.

For more precise documentation, the date and time of the measurement are sometimes also stored. Specially equipped devices even allow the creation of individual accounts.

Complementary apps are available from the manufacturers to provide a better overview of these accounts and of the temperature progression. They synchronise with the device and enable permanent storage and export of the data.

Fever alarm

If the temperature rises above 38 degrees, many forehead thermometers have a fever alarm. This takes the form of an acoustic signal such as a beep or a visual signal.

The colour of the display shows how the fever level should be classified. This is often done according to the traffic light principle: normal temperature, mild and high fever are indicated with a green, yellow or red display.

Some models also have an age-dependent system and display. The reason for this is simple:

The definition of fever differs between children depending on their age.

User-friendliness

In addition to the purchasing criteria presented so far, there are other factors that contribute to the user-friendliness of the forehead thermometer. You can see what these are by looking at the following list. Below you will also find a detailed explanation of the individual criteria.

  • Display
  • Silent mode
  • Waterproof
  • Measuring unit

Display

Forehead thermometers all have displays that show the measured body temperature. Illuminated displays are particularly advantageous for use at night.

As mentioned above, a display with a colour-changing function also facilitates the measurement. To ensure that the forehead thermometer does not waste energy, it should switch off automatically when not in use.

Such a power-saving mode is available on most devices. Nevertheless, you should always have suitable spare batteries at home.

Silent mode

With a sick child, parents are usually glad when the child finally falls asleep. But even during sleep, the temperature should be checked regularly if a fever is suspected.

A contactless forehead thermometer can be used so that the child does not have to be woken up for this. To ensure that the child does not notice the measurement, the silent mode can also be switched on with some devices.

Normally, devices beep when they are switched on and when the measurement is finished. These beeps do not occur when the device is used in silent mode.

Waterproof

Although many contactless forehead thermometers can measure the temperature of liquids, they are not automatically waterproof. This is because, unlike contact thermometers, the temperature of liquids is also measured without contact.

The thermometer is held at a suitable distance, e.g. in front of the bottle, and the temperature is determined using infrared technology.

Nevertheless, it makes sense to choose a waterproof device. Accidents happen in the household all the time: Glasses tip over or children play with the thermometer without permission.

A waterproof device helps to ensure that the sensors are not damaged in the event of a mishap.

Measuring unit

Most forehead thermometers display the temperature in both degrees Celsius and degrees Fahrenheit. Depending on the device, both values are either shown directly on the display or you have to switch between the measuring units by pressing a button.

To find out how accurately your thermometer displays results in degrees Celsius and degrees Fahrenheit, contact the manufacturer.

Always bear in mind that the range of measuring accuracy also differs depending on the measuring unit: It is usually +/- 0.3 degrees Celsius or +/- 0.4 degrees Fahrenheit.

Facts worth knowing about forehead thermometers

How should I measure with a forehead thermometer to get an accurate result?

The placement of the device is important for the accuracy of the measurement. Two factors are relevant here:

  • Positioning
  • Distance

It is usual to position the device on the forehead between the eyebrows at a maximum distance of five cm. However, there are also devices where the forehead thermometer can be applied to the temples.

Therefore, ask the manufacturer about the exact specifications.

Did you know that the forehead thermometer and the person whose temperature is to be taken should be in the same room for at least 10 minutes before the measurement? This is important for an undistorted result.

How do I clean a contact forehead thermometer?

If you decide to use a contact forehead thermometer, you should remember to clean it regularly after each use.

To clean the outside of the device, use a soft cloth or cotton swab. To clean the probe of the forehead thermometer, disinfectant wipes or simple disinfectant with alcohol can be used.

The interior is wiped gently and the thermometer can then be used again.

If it is a combination device that also functions as an ear thermometer, there are further regulations: Many devices can only be used in the ear with the help of protective caps, which must be purchased separately.

Picture source: pixabay.com / Myriams-Fotos

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