The effect of medium temperature upon characteristic of stimulated Brillouin scattering (SBS) and SBS optical limiting is investigated. The physical mechanism behind is analyzed theoretically and experimentally verified in Continuum's Nd: YAG Q-switched laser system using FC-72 as the SBS medium. The temperature affects the electrostrictive coefficient, refractive index, density and acoustic velocity of the medium weakly. In contrast, the kinematic viscosity, which is inversely proportional to the temperature, is related to gain coefficient and phonon lifetime and thus greatly affects the SBS characteristics. Therefore, in the low temperature, the kinematic viscosity is usually high, which can lead to a small gain coefficient and a short phonon lifetime. Therefore, the SBS characteristic can be changed by controlling the temperature to a great extent.