Boric acid can be used as an antiseptic for minor burns or cuts and is sometimes used in dressings or salves. Boric acid is applied in a very dilute solution as an eye wash. Dilute boric acid can be used as a vaginal douche to treat bacterial vaginosis due to excessive alkalinity. As an anti-bacterial compound, boric acid can also be used as an acne treatment. It is also used as prevention of athlete's foot, by inserting powder in the socks or stockings, and in solution can be used to treat some kinds of otitis externa (ear infection) in both humans and animals. The preservative in urine sample bottles (red cap) in the UK is boric acid.
Boric acid solutions used as an eye wash or on abraded skin are known to be especially toxic to infants, especially after repeated use because of its slow elimination rate.
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