Borax denotes a mineral as well as a processed compound that is used for several purposes. This mineral form of borax is yielding and crystalline that may be colorless or whitish. At times, the mineral may have a brownish, yellowish or greenish tinge. When borax is struck against any other mineral, it leaves behind a whitish flaky smudge. Borax is also denoted as disodium tetraborate or sodium tetraborate, a substance that humans are familiar with for several thousand years. This substance is basically a chemical amalgam of the element called boron.
Borax derives its name from the Persian term ‘burak’, which people in the Middle East used to denote borax as well as other different salts of boron. The Romans adopted this term and later it was incorporated into English during the medieval times. In ancient times, people used borax as well as associated salts to preserve food as well as mummies, while the Chinese used them to make glazed pottery and in the form of a cleaning agent. During the Medieval period, people in Europe used borax in the form of a flux for soldering purposes – especially to clean metals prior to welding them together. Even today, people use borax for similar reasons, but it is thoroughly refined and purified before use.
Although borax is not considered to be an aggressively toxic substance, this mineral may result in skin reactions. You should never use this mineral internally, because ingesting even little amounts of it may prove to be detrimental for your health. However, it can be used for domestic purposes, for instance, in the form of a laundry brightener, cleaning agent as well as a pesticide or insecticide. In addition, borax is employed in producing antiseptics, fungicides as well as fire retardants. This compound is employed in the form of a bulwark in chemical reactions in laboratories, because it is an inactive base and helps to maintain the stability of chemical solutions.
Borax that is found in nature encloses an elevated fraction of water and when this water evaporates, the mineral turns out to be further whitish and brittle. Dehydrated borax is known as tincalconite. While processing this mineral for any use, it is generally disintegrated and blended with water, together with a catalytic agent that helps borax to dissolve further. As unadulterated borax crystals are reformed, they are all set for being packaged or additional refining in combination with other chemicals. In effect, one more chemical compound called kernite also encloses boron and is processed to obtain borax.
Borax turns into boric acid when it is mixed with sulfuric acid – boric acid is a chemical that is used in several industrial processes, counting preservation and cleaning. In addition, boric acid is also employed in the form of a gentle antiseptic and also in the form of a remedy for irritating eyes. Besides, boric acid is sold as a substitute for insecticides, because this chemical is especially moderate compared to a number of other chemical substances.
Borax is naturally available in various regions of the world. Nevertheless, the commercially viable borax is found in a number of locales including Boron in California, Romania, Turkey, Atacama Desert in Chile, Tibet and many other places in the south-western region of the United States. In effect, borax is a naturally occurring compound that forms due to the frequent evaporation of some lakes. When these lakes evaporate, deposits left behind produce borax. In case the demand for borax exceeds that which is available naturally, it can be produced artificially using compounds of boron.
In present times, many people consider borax to be an effective constituent of products used for cleaning, because this mineral forms a vital constituent of several detergents. It is extensively used by the laundry industry in the form of a cleaning and brightening agent. In addition, people also use borax to clean as well as to refresh rooms, for instance, the kitchen and bathroom. Borax solution enhances the efficacy of cleaners and bleaches. It is versatile cleaner, as water molecules are converted into hydrogen peroxide by this mineral while cleaning. Apart from these, borax also offers several other cleaning benefits; for instance, blending boron and salt in the presence of oxygen or without it creates a mixture that inhibits the growth of a number of organisms. In other words, this mixture possesses the aptitude to regulate development of germs and this is the reason why borax is also effective in the form of a pesticide as well as insecticide. In effect, insecticides containing borax, for instance, boric acid, are thought to be superior substitutes of a number of insecticides available commercially, because borax has a gentle nature.
Health uses for borax
Apart from its domestic and industrial uses, borax is also employed for therapeutic purposes. This mineral is a strong as well as useful medication that needs to be used extensively – it should especially find place in the medical kit in all homes. In fact, borax is not only extremely inexpensive, but also very effectual and this is one reason why most pharmaceutical firms have tried their best to damage the reputation of this mineral. The worst part of it is that the pharmaceutical companies have succeeded in their effort to make countries in Europe and the United States to ban the use of borax. Nevertheless, people in Russia, Japan, China, Turkey and several other nations not only recognize the usefulness of borax, but also use it extensively. In fact, pharmaceutical companies in these countries have been finding it difficult to influence (read bribe) the lawmakers as well as the regulatory bodies to ban this substance.
It is believed that male impotency can be reversed if one adds borax in measures of one-fourth teaspoon to one quart of water and sip it all through the day and also takes magnesium supplements simultaneously. In fact, this is one of the several health benefits offered by borax. Borax works to make the level of magnesium and calcium stable in the bloodstream. In addition, borax also promotes the production of hormones. Using borax internally also helps to put off and normalize the toxic conditions caused by hyper fluoride build-up, internal development of fungus and production of hazardous microbe. In addition, borax is also associated with enhancement of sexual craving in females.
During the 19th and the 20th centuries, physicians suggested that women who had inflammation of the womb immerse themselves in a bath containing tepid water mixed with borax no less than twice daily. In case women suffered from leucorrhea, vaginal discharges resembling the egg-white, they were advised to douche with a solution of warm water and borax roughly thrice or four times daily. Borax is also effective in alleviating other problems endured by women, such as hurting sexual intercourse, profusely clotted menstrual flows, throbbing menstruation, vaginal discharges containing blood, distension of the abdomen as well as bogus pregnancy symptoms.
In addition, borax has several other uses, as it is a noxious substance for parasites, insects, bacteria and protozoa. This mineral is also useful for getting rid of fungi as well as moulds both inside the body as well as those that are external. Borax also helps to enhance attention; short-term as well as long-term memory; improves coordination between the hands and eyes; augments awareness and makes one physically more agile.
It is worth mentioning here that over the years people have effectively used borax for treating a wide variety of health conditions. This mineral may be used to prevent as well as treat numerous ailments.
Osteoarthritis is a health condition wherein the joints wear away, especially the joints that are often subjected to strain, infection and used in excess even when they are injured. This condition is more widespread in men. In this case, the sturdy fiber-like substance or cartilage that covers the joints erodes, leaving the bones naked to stroke against one another. This not only results in intense pain, but also worsens the condition leading to permanent joint damage. In addition, boron is useful for treating gout.
Spondylitis, which is considered to be arthritis of the spinal vertebrae accompanied by joint inflammations, is also treated with borax. People suffering from this condition experience loss of calcium from their spinal vertebrae and it often results in the fusion as well as derangement of the spinal discs. It is worth mentioning here that mineral treatments, including using borax, are effective for curing spondylitis.
Borax is also effective for treating as well as preventing the occurrence of osteoporosis, a condition wherein the bones lose calcium rapidly, and/ or osteopenia (a condition wherein the bones lose their density).
This naturally occurring mineral is also helpful for treating disorders related to blood lipids, high blood pressure (hypertension) as well as diseases related to the arteries. People who are overweight or obese may also find using borax beneficial.
The condition called pyorrhoea, a condition wherein the teeth become loose and the gums are swollen, can be treated using borax. In fact, this condition is often considered to be arthritis of the gums and teeth.
Therapeutically, boron is used in very small amounts to sustain our health as well as to put off developing health conditions like arthritis. As in the case of any other chemical compound, when used is excessive amounts, boron results in unpleasant results.
In all likelihood, only when you take several grams (which is equal to about 1000 mg) of boron daily for many months that you will have toxicity symptoms. The signs of boron toxicity may include vomiting, diarrhea, nausea and lethargy. Sooner or later, some people may also develop dermatitis.
You should know that taking too much boron may lead to deterioration or even set off health disorders such as asthma, allergies, ADHD, autism, dyslexia, cystic fibrosis, cancers of the liver and esophagus. Boron has a propensity to enhance oestrogen and calcium levels in the bloodstream, while decreasing the levels of vitamin B6, blood glucose and zinc. Vitamin B2 is a perfect antidote for boron.
In addition, use of this chemical also may possibly also result in skin reactions. Therefore, it is advisable that you should avoid its contact with skin. Moreover, though borax is used in a particular form in several products like solutions of boric acid that are meant for washing chafed skin and the eyes, care should be taken to ensure that children, especially babies do not come in contact with this substance. In case of ingesting borax accidentally, seek immediate medical aid.