Are you Right handed or Left handed ? Which one is better !

Being right-handed or left-handed is something natural, and we can't do much about it. Just as we can't choose our gender, we also can't choose our dominant hand. But nature is not so neutral about dominant hand as 90% population is right-handed, while just 10% are left handed. Only 1% population can be called ambidextrous. Ambidexterity is the ability to use both hands equally. Does it mean that ambidextrous people are better than both right handed and left handed people. If it is so, then why all of us are not evolved to be ambidextrous ? will try to answer this question in this article.

Is there any difference in our genes that makes us righty, lefty or ambidextrous?
Genetics explains a lot of things but in case of dominant hand, it is a bit confusing. Till now researchers have not not found a single genetic locus ( a genetic marker) that can be held responsible for being right-handed or left handed. You will be surprised to know that when scientists studied 25,732 families with twins, they found that heritability of handedness is roughly 24%. In a normal case if both parents are left-handed then their are 74% chances for the child being right-handed. So our heredity has got very less to do with our dominant hand.
Ambidexterity is the ability to use both hands with equal perfection. Some experts believe that it is just a practice which makes people perfect in using both hands, but most of the ambidextrous people prefer to use their original hand when they are in hurry to complete a work.

What decides which dominant hand will a child have ?
  • Genetic factors can answer only 25% of such behavior, remaining 75% are the environmental factors.
  • Some researchers believe that position of a baby in final trimester decides the dominant hand. 
  • Premature babies are five times more likely to be left-handed.
  • A mother aged above 40 years is 120% more likely to a left-handed child.

Why are there more right handed people ?
According to Stanley Coren, Professor of Psychology at the University of British Columbia, more right-hand dominance is unique to humans. Other animals have 50-50 chances of side dominance, even the chimpanzees. One possible reason behind it our developed brain and our ability to speak. During evolution our brain divided itself in different regions to control different functions of body. Precise or more accurate tasks are mostly done by left side of brain, which also controls right side of body. This is the reason why most of us are right-handed.

Is left-hand dominance a disease ?
According to Professor Coren, "Yes". If during the final phases of pregnancy if sufficient blood supply is interrupted to left side of developing brain, then right brain tends to capture some of its functions and thus a person becomes left-handed by birth. Some other researches, especially left-handed, don't agree with this theory, as there have been a number of world famous personalities in different fields who have shown their brilliance.
According to Professor Coren, left handed people are more vulnerable to diseases and may also have learning difficulties, which also makes them criminals, schizophrenics and alcoholics. Here are some figures that he provided in his book "The Left-Hander Syndrome".
  • Left-handers are 11.5 times more prone to suffer from hay fever and asthma.
  • Eczema and diabetes is more common in left-handed people.
  • Left handers are three times more prone to depression and suicide.
  • Insomnia and cross-eyedness is two times more common in left handers.
  • Deafness is 2.5 times more among left handers.
  • Left handers are 4 times more prone to being Alcoholic as an adult.
  • Dyslexia is 11 times more common among left handers. 
  • Average age of left-handed men is 10 years less than right-handed men, while left-handed women live 4 years less.
  • A study done in 1921 found that there were only 7% left handed children in normal school, while there were 17% left handed children in schools for mentally retarded.
Contrary to the above facts, several left handed people achieved a place in society and history that we can never forget. Some of them are:
Mark Zuckerberg, Albert Einstein, Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Picasso, Charlie Chaplin,Leonardo Da Vinci,  Gerald Ford, Ronald Reagan, Mahatma Gandhi, Isaac Newton, Neil Armstrong, Aristotle, Sachin Tendulkar, Amitabh Bachchan and the list can go on.

Do these facts really prove anything or it is just a way to prove that one kind of humans are better than others. Being left handed might be a disease ( as Professor Coren wrote in his book), but it does not mean that left-handers are anyway less intelligent or creative than their right-handed counterparts. Instead left handers live a tougher life than most of the right handers as most of the day-to-day tools, such as potato peeler, pencil sharpner, corkscrews, scissors and many more are designed for right-handed usage. Even our languages consider right as right and left as wrong.

Lefties overwork on their talents to prove themselves, which makes them even better in several cases. Our mind and brain are much beyond than what we know. According to, we still need more research to know the reasons behind being left-handed. In the mean time we should make this world more friendly to left-handers by making ambidextrous tools. There is no answer, to the question that which handed people are better. It is the work with these hands that makes us a better person. 

In the end you must know that human brain is brilliant, it can prove whatever it wants. Sometimes we just want to prove our preconceived notions. A researcher, who wants to prove left-handers are less brilliant, might say that 17% children in mentally retarded school were left-handed. But here he is ignoring the fact that remaining 83% are still right-handed.

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