According to multiple news sources, a girl in Massachusetts suffered second- and third-degree burns on her hands after trying a YouTube tutorial on how to make homemade slime. The reason? The chemical borax.
The daughter came to her mother and said that her hands felt tingly after making the slime. Her hands were covered in blisters. Fortunately, doctors say that she will make a full recovery and that the burns were caused by extended exposure to borax.
Borax slime recipes are getting a lot of attention from kids because they can make slime of all different colors. Borax, when combined with water and glue, create a base for the slime. There are even educational materials about slimes that demonstrate how to create it. However, many tutorials are intended for high school students who know how to handle chemicals safely.
Another Slime-related Burn Case
There is another chemical burn case related to making homemade slime in the UK, this one involving a substitution of laundry detergent for borax. The article from Manchester Evening News explains what happened. The girl in this case may need to get plastic surgery to regain the full use of her hands.
Promoting Safe Science Experiments
It’s great when children want to experiment, but parents should know what their kids are doing and the risks involved so they can help them mitigate those risk. Chemical burns are a risk that comes with some chemical experiments, especially when making substitutions or handling the materials incorrectly. Children should perform experiments that use chemicals under adult supervision.
If your child wants to make homemade slime, do it with them and use gloves. The child in the first case had a strong sensitivity to borax that caused the chemical burns. Usually, contact with borax does not cause reactions unless it encounters broken skin. An article about the slime from ABC 27 goes into greater detail about the dangers of borax and how it may affect children who make the slime.
If your child has suffered a chemical burn from a science experiment, we encourage you to check out our burn recovery resources, including our page on helping children cope with burn injuries.