Slime craze prompts safety concerns

Consumer Reports cautions about Borax as ingredient

By Marilyn Moritz - Reporter

SAN ANTONIO - The latest kids’ craze is concocting slimy, stretchy and gloppy goo. The do-it-yourself project has reportedly caused some glue shortages in stores, but Consumer Reports said a bigger concern is one of slime’s key ingredients, Borax, a household cleaner.

Some recipes call for a combination of school glue, water and Borax. However, Consumer Reports said you should take some precautions before starting the project. Borax, also known as sodium tetraborate hexahydrate, is meant to be a household cleaner or an additive for your laundry. Just because you have it around, and because it seems to be perfectly safe for those types of applications, doesn’t mean it should be used in anything else, particularly household slime.

Borax products can come with a label that reads "Keep out of reach of children." Sodium tetraborate hexahydrate is a known eye, nose and respiratory tract irritant. Young children should not exposed to this because it’s a potential hazard.

Another concern is toddlers or younger children getting a hold of the slime or its ingredients and accidentally consuming them. For older children and adults, use common sense, avoid direct contact with your eyes and wash your hands after making and playing with the slime. And as a reminder, it’s always a good idea to store household cleaning and laundry products out of reach of children.

If Borax does come into contact with your eyes, be sure to rinse with plenty of water for 15 minutes. In case of accidental ingestion, call the Poison Control Center at 1-800-222-1222, or seek medical attention.

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