FREE Thyroid Report & Newsletter

Top 5 Temp-Taking Mistakes

Body temperature measurement is the simple, affordable and easy test that can reveal the cause behind a multitude of WTS complaints. But the test only works if it is administered properly! Improving your temp-taking accuracy will help enable the best possible outcomes of WTS therapy. Keep these Top 5 Temp-Taking Mistakes in mind when following WTS protocols:

1. Eating hot or cold foods or drinks. Wait at least 20 minutes after eating or drinking anything hot or cold before you take your temperature. Temp changes in the mouth from hot or cold foods and beverages linger longer than you might think!

2. Using a mercury thermometer. Sure, mercury thermometers are accurate. But due to environmental legislation, they are becoming less and less available. Mercury is incredibly toxic, so it’s wise to remove it from your home immediately. Be sure to dispose of your old mercury thermometers the right way: Take them to your local hazardous waste collection facility.

3. Using a digital thermometer. Digital thermometers can become less accurate when their batteries are low or when they’ve been dropped from a height as low as five inches! Digital thermometers are convenient, but cannot reliably provide the precision that is needed for WTS protocols.

4. Bad timing. We recommend that people try to take their temperatures for roughly the same amount of time for each reading. Keeping the thermometer under the tongue for five minutes is just right.  When you keep it in longer, the reading continues to rise, apparently due to increased blood flow to the area from the mechanical action of the thermometer to the underside of the tongue. You want the thermometer in for enough time, but not too long.

5. Agitating the tongue. It is important to keep the tongue still during temp taking. Moving the tongue about causes temperature shifts that can lead to inaccurate results and low body temperature readings. It may be challenging, but try to sit still for the full five minutes!

We recommend Galinstan mercury-free liquid metal thermometers because they are the most accurate we’ve found. Galinstan thermometers can sometimes be found at regular drug stores, or online.


Denis Wilson

P.S., One more tip: Galinstan thermometers have a very thin tube for the liquid metal (like a capillary tube). Some people sometimes find them hard to shake down.  One easy way to handle that is to put the thermometer in its plastic case and then slip the end you put in your mouth into a sock and let the case slip down toward the toe of the sock.  Grab the ankle of the sock and start twirling it like a propeller.  The centrifugal action spins the metal down toward the tip of the thermometer very easily.

About the Author:

Denis Wilson, MD described Wilson 's Temperature Syndrome in 1988 after observing people with symptoms of low thyroid and low body temperature, yet who had normal blood tests. He found that by normalizing their temperatures with T3 (without T4) their symptoms often remained improved even after the treatment was discontinued. He was the first doctor to use sustained-release T3.


  1. Jeff July 26, 2012 at 8:12 pm - Reply

    The “How are Body Temperatures Measured?” page says to “make sure to shake down the Mercury and Galistan (thermometers) before each use to reset them”. Is there any chance that the sudden physical activity involved in shaking down a thermometer (especially the Galistan ones, which require harder shaking) could briefly affect the body temperature reading, and would it therefore be better to shake down thermometers AFTER each use to assure the most accurate readings?

    • deniswilson July 26, 2012 at 8:45 pm - Reply

      That’s a good point and I think it would be better to shake them down after than before. However, when we consider the size of the body and that it’s mostly water, it doesn’t seem as though the heat from shaking for a few seconds would make an appreciable difference. I do know that muscles can generate a lot of heat, but it also takes a lot of heat to heat water. Best :)

Leave A Comment