Monday, February 15, 2016

Kinsa Thermometer Review

I've actually had this post sitting in my drafts for a while now...because I felt weird writing a personal review on it without really "using" it...I don't know, seemed kinda fake to me if I just whipped something up just because.

So, I wanted some practical use of this nifty little device before writing this review...and, low and behold, Rosie came down with her legit nasty winter cold, so we put this bad boy to the test.


For those of you who are wondering what the heck I'm talking about, it's this guy pictured above: the Kinsa Smart Thermometer (check out their website here for more deets).  A little history on this cool tool, that I borrowed from the Kinsa website:

"We created the first FDA-cleared app-enabled thermometer because, from our work in the health systems within the U.S. and across impoverished nations throughout the world, we’ve learned that an elevated temperature is often the first sign of sickness.  By building intelligence into a once basic thermometer and turning it into a connected device, we’re able to keep an eye on illnesses from beginning to end. We can more quickly alert users when fever and symptoms warrant closer monitoring or a visit to the doctor. Our network of connected thermometers can even offer helpful insights such as common illnesses that may be circulating in a local area or within a user’s school.  Kinsa is ready to help whole communities better track, treat, and stop the spread of illness. But we know we’ll only do it if our products delight users from their first touch. It’s with this in mind that we developed the Kinsa Smart Thermometer."

Pretty cool, huh?!  I mean, yes, it's easy to grab a regular thermometer, get a temp reading, and toss it back into the medicine cabinet.  But, what I love about the Kinsa one is that it syncs with an app on your phone and keeps a log of temperature readings, symptoms, and so forth in one spot.  I know this would have been SUPER helpful when Patrick had his almost month-long plague back in September last year--would have been really useful to track his fevers, how high they got, and all of his other symptoms.


It's neat how it allows you to set up different profiles for each of the members of your family, and allows you to track separate temperatures and symptoms for each of them.  Obviously the kiddos get their temp taken more than Mike or I, but it's still nice and useful to have everyone all in one place.


Another pretty sweet feature is the groups--this is in BETA mode, but it allows you to link up with the schools/organizations in your area to track any bugs (flu, viruses, etc...) going around.  I haven't played around too much with the groups feature, probably because it is still new, but it seems like a really cool tool to have to see if there are any health concerns or trends nearby.



Rosie recently got her first super nastttyyyyy winter cold.  So.much.snot.  So gross.  After it seemed that it wasn't going away after a day--and actually looking like it was getting worse--I whipped out the Kinsa thermometer and thought we should start tracking her temp and symptoms.  I didn't think she had a fever, but I also could put my hand in a burning oven and not think it was very hot either, so I decided to get a thermometer opinion to make sure I wasn't just not feeling it.

Turns out Ro didn't have a fever (and still doesn't! Going on day 3 with the Kinsa confirming no fever, just congestion, runny nose, and a little cough for sister bear).  I even, cause I'm OCD and like things to be double and triple-checked, took her temp more than once each time I've taken it with the Kinsa (cause I'm always skeptical of thermometers!) and it is the exact same temp every.single.time.  So that's super cool--something that no other thermometer seems to be that sensitive with.

The thermometer is easy to use--you just launch the app, plug in the thermometer into the headphone jack, and tell the app where you're taking the temp at (arm, mouth, rectal).  It launches the temperature catcher, and even lets you pop bubbles for the few seconds it's reading (Patrick loves this).  Then, when it's finished it tells you your temp and asks you if you want to save the reading and log any symptoms.  So easy, right?!  RIGHT.

The one downside to this device (in my opinion) is that it can take a little long (sometimes 20ish seconds) to get the temp reading and that is a longgggg time for little ones to stay still with a thermometer under their arm or in their mouth.  Sometimes it's a bit tricky and it takes us a couple tries to get a good, accurate reading without anyone wiggling away.  That really is my only criticism, and, honestly, Kinsa seems to have already remedied this with having the Smart Ear thermometer available (the one I have is the Smart Stick).  Maybe I'll need to get my hands on that and give that one a whirl too!

Anyways, I want to offer up my own personal recommendation for this nifty little thermometer.  It definitely is something you won't necessarily need to use all the time (or shoot, maybe it is--if you're charting your morning temps or what not, uh-hm, ladies--a great way to chart your cycles!) but when you do need it it is something you will be happy to have.  And the app is accessible any time with or without the thermometer plugged in, so you can always add symptoms and data and check group updates.  All in all, I highly recommend this thermometer and will be adding this to my baby item must-haves for my soon-to-be new parent friends!

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