Consumer Reports warns of dangers of Borax when making household slime

MASSACHUSETTS (WABC) -- The recent case of an 11-year-old burning her hands from homemade slime has some parents concerned about safety.

The student in Massachusetts, Kathleen Quinn, suffered third- and second-degree burns and blisters because of the ingredient borax.

PHOTOS: Girl says she was burned by homemade slime

Consumer Reports studied at the potentially-dangerous ingredient and what parents need to know about making sure their kids' slime is safe.

The do-it-yourself slime has become the latest kids' craze, but that key ingredient in the concoction -- Borax -- is actually a household cleaner.

Some of the recipes on YouTube provide all sorts of ways to make the slippery stuff with ingredients from home - school glue, water and Borax.

But Consumer Reports' Chief Scientific Officer James Dickerson said parents should take precautions when using the substance.

"(It) is meant to be a household cleaner or an additive for your laundry," he said. "Just because you have it around, just 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."

The Borax product comes with a label that states "keep out of reach of children." Dickerson said sodium tetraborate hexahydrate, or Borax, is an irritant to the eyes, nose and respiratory tract.

Another concern is that toddlers and younger children could get hold of the slime or its ingredients and accidentally ingest it.

Older children and adults should avoid direct contact with the eyes and make sure to wash their hands after making and playing with the slime.

As a reminder, it is always a good idea to store household cleaning and laundry products out of reach of children. If Borax does somehow come into contact with a child's eyes, be sure to rinse with plenty of water for 15 minutes.

In case of accidental ingestion, call the Poison Control Center or seek immediate medical attention.
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