Borax is a boron compound usually found in the form of a white powder. The powder is water-soluble. Many household items contain a form of borax, including cosmetics, pottery, and detergents. Borax powder can be used to kill household pests like fleas, ants and roaches, but once the powder has done its job, immediate cleanup is suggested since it's toxic to pets and children. It is a relatively easy cleanup process, but you still must take precautions.

Borax can be swept up. It must be disposed of properly.

Step 1

Move children and pets to another area of the home before beginning the cleanup. Wear protective gloves, some breathing protection and eye protection, such as safety goggles. During cleanup, you may accidentally kick up some of the dust, so be prepared in advance. Inhaling the powder can cause shortness of breath, coughing and even nose bleeds. Ingestion can cause abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting and weakness. Be safe rather than sorry when dealing with chemicals.

Step 2

Sweep the dust into a container with a tight seal. Moisten the powder before sweeping it up to prevent dusting. Alternatively, you can also vacuum up the powder. Dispose of the vacuum bag in the same way as a container in the following step.

Step 3

Dispose of the container appropriately into a garbage can, preferably one that's located outside the home. Be careful to keep the borax away from water sources. Borax is harmful to aquatic environments.

Step 4

Scrub the surfaces where the borax powder was with hot, soapy water. If the powder was on rugs, consider steam-cleaning the carpet to remove residue.