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Thread: Health Canada warns against exposure to Boric Acid

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    Health Canada warns against exposure to Boric Acid

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    Re: Health Canada warns against exposure to Boric Acid

    It warns against using pesticides with boric acid and homemade slime. It does not say to avoid boric acid in your pool.
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    Re: Health Canada warns against exposure to Boric Acid

    "A recent draft risk assessment by Health Canada has found that overexposure to boric acid has the potential to cause developmental and reproductive health effects. Since Canadians are already exposed to boric acid naturally through their diets and water, Health Canada is advising that exposure from other sources should be reduced as much as possible, especially for children and pregnant women. The concern is not with any one product, but rather multiple exposures from a variety of sources."

    It also specifically warns Canadians, but I'm sure other nationalities may be affected as well

    I doubt the researchers considered that a small sample of the population, myself included, would have concentrations of around 50ppm of Boric acid in their swimming pools. That's likely a reason they don't specifically call out pools.

    That said, playing in a body of water with 50ppm of Boric acid may be considered overexposure.

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    Re: Health Canada warns against exposure to Boric Acid

    That website does mention that boric acid may be in your swimming pool chemicals but does not say to avoid them.
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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Health Canada warns against exposure to Boric Acid

    There is little actual boric acid in pool water. Boric acid is a granular solid substance that is an exposure hazard when using it as a pesticide or making kid "slime" (it's better/safer to use borax and Elmers glue instead of boric acid). In pool water, or any water for that matter, boric acid in the pH range of pools (7-8) converts to the borate anion (well over 95% of the boric acid turns into borate anion). It's an equilibrium reaction which is why borates work as a pH buffer. There's no significant dermal absorption of boron from water and you'd have to drink massive quantities of pool water before reaching any worrisome exposure limit. As well, the human body is exposed to boron all the time through dietary intake and has mechanisms for excretion that other forms of life, namely insects, do not (which is why it works as a pesticide). Borates are safe to use at 50ppm.

    Please see this post -

    Are Borates Safe to Use?
    Matt
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