Scabies is a skin condition caused by microscopic mites that burrow under your skin. It results from personal contact with another person who is infected with scabies and can be notoriously difficult to diagnose and treat. One common home remedy for scabies uses borax, a common laundry additive and ingredient in cosmetics.

Borax Defined

Borax (sodium borate) is a natural mineral compound that acts as a natural cleaning booster. It also can be used to kill fungus, insect pests and unwanted herbal pests, as well as to dry and preserve organic substances.

How Borax Kills Scabies Mites

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Borax kills scabies in two ways. First, it is a poison that kills when it is ingested by the insect. Second, it dissolves the protective wax coating that protects them from drying out so that they dry up and die.

Borax Treatment for Scabies

One common home remedy for treating scabies is to soak in a bathtub of water to which 1 to 2 cups of borax and 1 cup of hydrogen peroxide have been added. The treatment is repeated daily until the condition subsides. While there is no medical proof that the borax scabies treatment works, there is a great deal of anecdotal evidence to support its use.

Preventing Scabies Reinfection with Borax

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One reason that scabies is so difficult to cure is that the insects can survive for up to 72 hours on bedding and furniture. To prevent reinfection with scabies, wash all bedding and clothing in hot water with borax. Sprinkle borax liberally on carpets, mattresses and furniture and leave for at least 1 hour before vacuuming.


Borax is poisonous if taken internally. If you choose to use borax to treat scabies, be sure to keep it away from children, pets and any food preparation surfaces. It can also irritate the eyes and mucous membranes.