New Research Helps Explain Right-Handed vs Left-Handed

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Why are some individuals right-handed dominant, while others favor their left hand? New research is helping to explain the preference.

Nine out of 10 people worldwide are considered right-handed. Scientists at Oxford University in England believe they have discovered a network of genes that affect people’s inclination to choose their right hand over their left. The researchers studied developing embryos and isolated the gene network that helps create the difference in right- or left-hand dominance in the brain.

A common rumor in society is that left-handed people are more artistic, but scientists say it’s a myth. The brain has two hemispheres:  the right side and the left side. Through research, medical professionals have determined that the right side of the brain tends to control the left side of the body, and the left hemisphere directs the right side. And they’ve discovered that creative activities, such as drawing, singing, and writing are initiated mostly on the right side of the brain. Although this information would suggest that left-handed people are more imaginative, scientists claim these tasks actually require crossover activity from both sides of the brain.

Scientists agree that left-handed people have the edge when competing in sports. Since most people are right-handed, athletes who are lefties are a surprise element for opponents to overcome; they require others to adjust their competitive tactics.

To learn more about handedness preferences, review these articles:

11 Little-Known Facts About Left-Handers

What Are the Benefits of Being Left-Handed?

5 Surprising Facts About Left-Handed People