People exposed to chemicals that are used to fireproof sofas and mattress are two times more likely to develop thyroid cancer, scientists have alerted.

Fire retardants i.e. toxic chemicals such as decaBDE (decabromodiphenyl ether) and TCEP that are mostly used in most sofas at home can lead to cancer amongst adults and could develop cognitive deficits in kids.

These chemicals are making people suffer after being exposed to them mainly through the household dust. The wide usage of these chemicals, has, however, been restricted, but experts have cautioned that more stringent measures to ban them completely in domestic usage should be at the top of the agenda.

This news comes after the British Government has been warned several times of the dangers of these chemicals have caused a lot of cancer illnesses and it's affecting families and children, in particular.

Thyroid cancer rising in Britain

Thyroid cancer cases have soared by nearly 75 per cent in the last 10 years in the United Kingdom. American researchers have warned that the rapid increase in the usage of Flame Retardants is a primary factor.

Dr Heather Stapleton, from Duke University in North Carolina along with her colleague, Julie Ann Sosa studied 140 patients with and without thyroid cancer and who had resided in their own homes for more than 10 years. They gathered household dust from each person's home and took blood samples from people with thyroid cancer. The research has revealed that the patients were highly exposed to flame retardants called polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs).

These toxic chemicals were barred in 2004, although they are still present in the homes and living rooms of people who have bought furniture before that period.

The cancer patients also showed greater levels of TCEP - a fire retardant which was banned sixteen years ago. Both PBDEs and TCEP chemicals have a detrimental effect on cancer because they can affect with hormones in the human body.

How does DecaBDE enter our bodies?

DecaBDE, the most widely used of the PBDE chemicals used in sofas, mattresses and carpets, is not banned yet but highly restricted. It's the household dust which transports the toxins that then enter our bodies via the respiratory system and through food and on our hands.

Brominated flame retardants have been known to affect sperm counts, learning difficulties and cause problems in becoming pregnant.