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Is a Body Temperature of 35.4°C, 35.5°C or 35.6°C Normal

Is a Body Temperature of 35.4°C, 35.5°C or 35.6°C Normal

Body temperature is very tightly regulated in humans, as various physiological activities require a specific temperature to function properly. The temperature of peripheral tissues, such as skin, mucous membranes, muscles or limbs is variable depending on different factors, including their age, recent physical activity, menstrual cycle, consumption of food and fluids, and even the time of the day.

An abnormal body temperature can be a sign that something is wrong in the body. However, what is considered a dangerous temperature for one person can be completely normal in another. Still, there are ways to find out whether your temperature is normal or not.

Is a body temperature of 35.4ºC, 35.5ºC or 35.6ºC normal? If your temperature ranges between 95.7 to 96ºF, is everything working as it should? Read on this oneHOWTO article and find out.

You may also be interested in: Is a body Temperature of 36-36.1-36.2 Normal?

Body temperature below 35.6ºC in adults

A body temperature of 35.4°C, 35.5°C or 35.6°C (95.7°F, 95.9°F or 96°F) may seem close to the normal body temperature of 36.4ºC to 37.6ºC (97.5ºF to 99.6ºF), but it is actually considered well below it.

Here are some general categories:

Therefore, a body temperature below 35.6ºC (96ºF) in adults is not considered normal. Our body is able to thermoregulate - that is, to regulate its own temperature - to a tenth of a degree, but fluctuations of even one degree significantly affect bodily functions.

Depending on the circumstances of the adult below 35.6ºC, the low number could be a sign of hypothermia, and should be monitored closely.

Body temperature below 35.6ºC in children

A body temperature of 35.4°C, 35.5°C or 35.6°C (95.7°F, 95.9°F or 96°F) in children is generally not normal and you should immediately seek advice from a doctor. Meanwhile, follow the necessary instructions to warm the body, such as removing wet clothing, covering the person with warm, dry clothes and giving them warm liquids to drink.

The normal body temperature for children is of at least 36ºC (96.8ºF). If your child's temperature is lower than that, especially if it is below 35.6ºC (96ºF), visit your pediatrician. They will know what should be the body temperature of your child in their specific case, as not everyone has the exact same characteristics and requirements.

Here you can learn how to reduce fever in children if the problem is a too high temperature.

Armpit temperature

There is more than one way to skin a cat and there is more than one way to take your temperature. We won't go into the different types of thermometers, but we will discuss the 3 main ways to take body temperature.

The armpit temperature is naturally about half a degree lower than oral temperature. An armpit or axillary temperature of 35.4°C, 35.5°C or 35.6°C is a little low and you should take measures to warm up the body, but it is not as worrying. The reason why the axillary or armpit temperature is generally lower is because of the skin. Our skin has many purposes and one of them is as a coolant. It is used to regulate our core temperature and, as it is on the outside of our bodies, it will cool down more quickly in cooler ambient temperatures. Clothing and physical activity prior to having axillary temperature taken can also have a bearing on results.

Some children have constant axillary temperatures below 36°C (96.8°F), which is normal for them. This is known as physiological hypothermia. In this case, their body functions normally despite the lower than average temperature. Consult your pediatrician to ensure this is your child's case.

Oral temperature

An oral temperature of 35.4°C, 35.5°C or 35.6°C (95.7°F, 95.9°F or 96°F) is generally too low and you should warm up the body as soon as possible.

Measuring temperature orally is recommended for all patients except for those who are unconscious or suffering from mental confusion, seizures or conditions affecting the nose, mouth or throat, as well as children under 6 years old. If you're not sure how to measure oral temperature properly take a look at our article how to take oral temperature.

Taking oral temperature is considered more accurate than taking skin or axillary temperature, but there are also mitigating factors. What you eat before your temperature has been taken can have a bearing on your body temperature reading. Someone who has just eaten a bowl of ice cream will likely have a different temperature reading than some who has just eaten a hot bowl of chile. Smoking and general chewing (like with chewing gum) can also raise oral temperature readings.

Tympanic temperature is the reading is when the body temperature is taken from the ear. This is generally higher than axillary temperatures.

Rectal temperature

The body's core temperature is the temperature of a body deep inside as opposed to the outside temperature which may be taken under the armpit. The ideal temperature if the temperature at which vital organs function at their best. This is why rectal (and also vaginal) temperature readings are the most reliable. It is for the simple reason that they are in closer proximity to these organs. Hypothermia and hyperthermia affect this core temperature of the body and can be very dangerous. This is why you should take rectal temperature if concerned over hypo or hyperthermia.

A rectal temperature of 35.4°C, 35.5°C or 35.6°C (95.7°F, 95.9°F or 96°F) is concerning and you seek immediate medical assistance or raise the temperature of the body. The result of a rectal measurement tends to be 0.5°C - 0.7°C higher than with oral temperatures, so such a low result is definitely not normal.

Taking the temperature rectally is recommended for babies and patients under 6 years of age. Any discomfort causes by rectal temperature readings should be taken into consideration with the accuracy with which it may result.

What factors affect body temperature?

There are various factors that can affect body temperature by a few tenths of a degree, but any body temperature below 35°C is very concerning.

The following are risk factors for hypothermia:

  • Exposure to cold weather without proper clothing.
  • Diabetes.
  • Alcohol or drug intoxication and exposure to cold weather.
  • Very young or very advanced age.
  • Heat acclimatization. After long-term exercising in the heat, the body gets used to the temperature and develops a lower than average base body temperature.
  • Diseases that impact the production of perspiration, such as heart, lung and kidney disorders.
  • Diseases that cause an increase in heat production, such as infections, hyperthyroidism and any conditions that are accompanied by a fever.
  • Use of certain drugs, such as sedatives, amphetamines and antidepressants.
  • Mental disorders and states of acute or chronic alcohol consumption can decrease tolerance of excessive heat.

Body temperature and circadian rhythms

Just like the little dial in your hallway, your body has its own form of thermostat. There are different variables which affect your body temperature and they fluctuate during any given day. The temperature control of the body is called thermoregulation and we require this because different activities and states of being result in different body temperatures. Our circadian rhythm is the varying changes in processes which happen during any given 24 hour period.

The reason why we humans keep a 24 hour clock is not arbitrary. We sense light and time unconsciously and our body will change according to the time of day for a variety of reasons. These changes in our body also affect our body temperatures. Some of these body temperature altering factors include:

Sleep

During sleep, our body is at rest and will not be carrying out the same activities as we might if we were active and awake. The lowest human body temperature during rest is known as the Basal body temperature (BBT) and this occurs most often during sleep. This is why it is taken just before somebody wakes up. If a person sleeps at night and is awake during the day (something not common in everyone), then their body temperature is likely to be at its highest between 4 pm and 6 pm. This is often due to physical activity carried out during the day as well as eating and storage of energy. This means if you take a person's temperature at different times of the day, different variances should be taken into consideration.

Gender

Women are more likely to fluctuate naturally thanks to the rise and fall of particular hormones related to the menstrual cycle. After ovulation, a woman's Basal body temperature increases. This is why women practicing the rhythm method of contraception sometimes take their temperature to check their fertility levels. Similarly those looking to conceive do the same thing. Hormonal contraceptives such as the pill work to repress fertility, but can also raise body temperature when doing so. If worried about a change in body temperature, this can be taken into consideration. Hormonal changes in general can affect body temperature for men or women, so those undergoing hormone replacement therapy or who are taking supplementary hormones should also be considerate of this.

Physical activity

Unsurprisingly, physical activity can affect body temperature. If you are taking your temperature, but have just gone for a run, then physical exertion will lead to increased body temperature. Similarly, times of inaction or rest will have lowered body temperature. The clothing which one wears can also affect body temperature. Warmer clothing can, understandably, affect core and axillary body temperatures.

Overall health

Although worrisome health concerns can have a bearing on body temperature and is a good indicator to tell if medical action is required, overall health can be a factor. If you are a healthy person, your body may use up more energy as it is more efficient. If you have a higher metabolism, then you will likely have a higher body temperature. This is why older people may have lower average body temperatures. This is not because your metabolism slows down, but because your body's activity does. It is important for everyone to stay active, but particularly for older people as they need to regulate their bodies. According to The American Institute for Cancer Research, this can help lessen the risk of certain cancers.

Is a temperature below 35.6ºC dangerous?

Although a body temperature of 35.4°C, 35.5°C or 35.6°C (95.7°F, 95.9°F or 96°F) is not normal, it isn't necessarily dangerous if you are a healthy adult or child. You should know whether that temperature is normal for you: if the drop has been sudden, you should take it more seriously and call a doctor.

That being said, body temperatures below 35.4 (95.7ºF) can be more alarming.

This article is merely informative, oneHOWTO doe not have the authority to prescribe any medical treatments or create a diagnosis.We invite you to visit your doctor if you have any type of condition or pain.

If you'd like to read similar articles to Is a Body Temperature of 35.4°C, 35.5°C or 35.6°C Normal, we recommend you browse around our Diseases & secondary effects category.

Tips
  • Armpit temperature should be taken by placing a thermometer under the arm for a period of approximately 4 minutes.
  • Visit your doctor and he/she will explain you which body temperature should be appropriate for your body.
Comments (20)

Write a comment about Is a Body Temperature of 35.4°C, 35.5°C or 35.6°C Normal

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Mrs Holly Oakes
I found it very interesting to read,and found the answer to my questions,
OneHowTo Editor (OneHowto editor)
We're glad we could help
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Rebecca Farebrother
My base temperature is usually 97.4 F, so when I have fever symptoms, it usually starts about 99 F. For me, by the time I reach average fever of 101, it feels like 105.
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Dd
No offence, but you really shouldn't be writing medical articles, or giving medical advice, when you aren't a doctor...
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Karen
Hi. Iv been feeling unwell for around 4 wks, the last 12 days have been worse, sore throat, difficulty in swallowing, extremely tiered, pain in my back and legs, headache, flushed cheeks, tummy pain and pains underarm my temp is 37.1 on occasions jump to 37.9, my nurse practitioner said it was just a flu like illness, I'm still suffering nearly a week after seeing her, any ideas at all?? Thanku
Jane Bertin (OneHowto editor)
If you're still in pain and have a fever, it's best to go to the doctor again to make sure.
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E Bellwood
just had surgery for a perinital absess Iwas an emergency one 3 weeks ago and could not remove it all My temperture keeps going to 34.7 to 36.2 am i at risk
OneHowTo Editor (OneHowto editor)
As you have had surgery not long ago, we advise you to visit your GP.
Rating:
Kate
My temperature has been 37.1 all through today and i feel hot, temp taken with an oral thermometer under my tongue. Should i worry?
OneHowTo Editor (OneHowto editor)
We advise you to take paracetamol every 8 hours to lower the temperature. We advise you to go to the doctor if the temperature rises further or lasts for more than two days.
Hope this helps
Rating:
martin
Hi I have a an ongoing problem with sinusitis and Lupos and have an ongoing battle with fever and low temperature. My temperature can vary day to day from 35.1 to 40 in a 24hr period. Im concerned about damage being caused to my internal organs at high temperature. Drs seem to just ignore my please for help as I am awaiting surgery on my sinuses. Not sure what i should do next
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FOUZIA DOMINGO
My daughter have a temp of 35 she had traumatic brain injuries Her vital signs are 60/20 is this normal.
OneHowTo Editor (OneHowto editor)
You might want to take her to the doctor so he or she can take a closer look at her.
Hope this helps
Rating:
NASIR MIR
i am 56 old and my temperature is 35.6.
OneHowTo Editor (OneHowto editor)
Don't worry, this temperature is not significant. Unless it goes down further or persists for more than 48h there is no need to visit a doctor. You should do so if this is not the case though.
Hope this helps
Cindy
Hi my body temp is always 35.5 has been for few years. I'm 43yrs and pre-menopausal. I've done acupuncture and nothing changes. I'm doing IVF with doner egg and worried that low body temp will affect this.
OneHowTo Editor (OneHowto editor)
As long as your GP knows about this and has not given you any indications on this condition you should be fine.
Hope this helps

Is a Body Temperature of 35.4°C, 35.5°C or 35.6°C Normal
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Is a Body Temperature of 35.4°C, 35.5°C or 35.6°C Normal