Does Borax Kill Bed Bugs?

Borax is effective at killing roaches but does it help with bed bugs too?

Bed bugs are tough to kill bugs that irritate you with their bites when you are sleeping peacefully. Nevertheless, you cannot feel it right at the moment, but they do itch poorly afterward. Their main strength is their ability to live without food or air for several months. Therefore, you need to explore novel methods of dealing with them.

What Is Borax?

Borax is one of the widely used compounds of Boron. The three other names with which borax is identified are disodium tetraborate, sodium borate, and sodium tetraborate.

You can use borax as a laundry booster, teeth bleach, flame retardant, insulating a home, as a household cleaner, and many other similar uses. This white powder does not affect human beings when used in small quantities but kills several insects.

Borax Vs. Boric Acid

Borax and boric acid are both compounds of Boron. The difference between these two is borax occurs naturally and is mined from the ground. On the other hand, the boric acid is extracted from borax by refining its form.

  • Boric acid requires some processing, so it is a little costlier than borax.
  • Boric acid is finer than borax, as its particles are easier to work with.
  • Borax can retain more moisture than Boric acid
  • Boron content is higher in boric acid than in Borax
  • Boric acid contains Hydrogen, Oxygen, and Boron, whereas Borax contains Sodium also.
  • Boron can turn hard by losing moisture content, making it hard to use around the house. Generally, this does not happen with boric acid.

When you look at them side by side, you really can’t tell the difference, and even most of the uses are similar.

However, there are several differences as above and many more advantages and disadvantages of using one over the other in various tasks. Hence, we need both of them equally and cannot choose one of them as the best.

Does Borax Kill Bed Bugs?

Borax kills insects when they eat it. Here out targets, the bed bugs do not eat anything except a blood meal. It’s unlikely that bed bugs would ingest borax accidentally.

So, there is no way to get the borax powder into the digestive system of bed bugs to kill them. Killing bed bugs with borax will be a tough order.

Precautions When Using Borax

Borax is an excellent pesticide for cockroaches. Usually, pesticides are harmful to human beings, but naturally occurring elements such as borax are safer than other chemical pesticides.

However, it does not mean you can use it without any caution. Even though it is harmless to be a poison, it still has its share of issues; you need to be aware of complete safety.

Is It Safe?

Borax is an eye irritant and causes respiratory issues when inhaled for a longer time. It is generally not dangerous when ingested in lower amounts but might be toxic if taken in high volume. Though borax in small amounts is not fatal, when you get exposed to it at a considerable level, you are susceptible to nausea, dizziness, and vomiting.

If you’re careful in not getting this powder into your eyes or nose and do not ingest it in high quantities, you can safely use it with few exceptions. Children, pets, and pregnant women are sensitive to small quantities of borax.

How To Use Boric Acid Powder To Kill Bed Bugs?

Similar to borax, only the ingestion of Boric acid kills the bed bugs. However, if ingested, the success rate is higher.

One study, which experimented on bed bugs using boric acid in several ways and providing a blood meal mixed with boric acid, succeeded in identifying this result. So, they are planning to introduce it in baits or find better ways to use it.

Better Ways Of Killing Bed Bugs

Aren’t there effective ways of killing these stubborn pests? Should we just surrender and suffer being the victims of these tiny yet blood sucking creatures? Luckily there are many effective ways of handling bed bugs as below.

Steam Cleaning

High-temperature exposure is something these bugs cannot deal with. They are killed when you expose them to 110 to 120° F in a matter of 15 to 20 minutes. Therefore, steam cleaners, which produces hot vapor above 212°F, are highly capable of killing bedbugs quickly.

Diatomaceous Earth

This natural compound is capable of drying out the exoskeleton of the bed bugs. Bed bugs eventually perish after prolonged contact with diatomaceous earth. While the process happens over weeks, it is safer than chemical treatments.

Bed Bug Spray

Bed bug sprays can be either of natural contents or made of chemicals. Most sprays kill them when they are directly sprayed or when they come into contact with the sprayed areas.

Few types of bedbugs have developed resistance to toxic chemicals, and scientists are still researching effective methods of killing them. Several kinds of research are conducted in various aspects to keep them away from you.

Final Thoughts

Killing bed bugs with borax is not as easy as it seems. These pests are notorious to avoid toxic compounds, what more eating them. Unless you can force-feed borax to bed bugs, it shouldn’t be your primary strategy.

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