The Exergen Temporal Scanner Thermometer ($30 at Wal-mart, $50 at Babies R Us) took seconds to use and yielded accurate results. Our kids are fascinated by it and we like having an alternative to the traditional methods, most especially rectal readings!

When our kids are sick and desperately need sleep it’s comforting to get a reading without waking them. With a little practice, we got the technique down quickly – remove the clear cap (an easy oversight), press and hold the button, lightly sweep it across the forehead, release the button and read the temperature.

After repeated use we learned a few tips to pass on: avoid use directly after baths and if your child is sweating take the temperature on the neck behind the earlobe instead.

The only thing we didn’t like was that the display screen isn’t back-lit so we needed a flashlight when using it in the night. That said, we still found this Made in the USA thermometer highly useful for making decisions and recommend it to other parents.

— Bonnie