Left or right? This will help you find your kid’s dominant hand!

What do Narendra Modi, Sachin Tendulkar, and Amitabh Bachchan have in common? We sure know they are famous, intelligent and good looking. But, did you know they were all left handed too? And now you know what makes them special!

Before the child is born odds are placed on the gender and as the baby grows up, it’s time to bet on whether he will be right or left handed. While most kids are ambidextrous until about 2 years, babies do begin to send hand preference cues as early as 7 months of age.

So, here are some signs you can observe to find out if your kid will be right or left handed.

What is hand dominance?

Hand dominance or handedness scientifically refers to the hand that is most used when you perform tasks. By far, a majority of the population is right-handed. Research shows that hand dominance is established when either the right or left hemisphere of your brain becomes the ruling side. As per International Children’s Education about 90 percent of the population prefers using the right hand for fine motor skills. Left handedness is less common and about 30% are proved to be mixed-handed or ambidextrous. Experts also suggest that hand dominance is an inborn trait and forcefully trying to change the preferred hand might hinder the child’s development.

However, there are some cues which help you identify if your kid is a lefty.

How to identify

The first clues to which hand your child prefers start to show between 7 to 9 months. But a child's preference for his dominant hand is clear between the ages of 2 and 4 years.

However, a good time for you to look for hand preference cues is when your kid is playing or performing everyday tasks. Here are 10 ways to find out if your child is right or left handed.

1. Try handing a toy to your kid and see which hand he uses most to pick it. This works best for kids between 6-9 months of age.

2. When your kid is 12-18 months, observe which hand he uses most while playing. Also, by this time you might notice him shifting the toy to the dominant hand.

3. Next time you give your child something to eat, observe which hand your child hold his spoon or fork.

4. Kids who are 2 and above use their dominant hand while performing complex tasks. For example- Your child might use the dominant hand for opening the bottle while holding the bottle with the non-dominant hand.

5. Kids who are 3 and above show a clear preference for their dominant hand when they hold a crayon, brush their teeth, flip the pages of the book, pick toys from the floor or hold the bottle.

Why lefties are smarter

Lefties don’t think the same way as right handed people. However, this does not make them right-brained.

Scientists believe that lefties are smarter and are also great achievers. Researchers from Johns Hopkins University and Lafayette College found that left-handers earned 10% to 15% more than their right-handed contemporaries with the same level of education. They also found that regarding the general population, however, there is no significant difference in income between the two.

Plus, lefties have the upper hand when it comes to one-on-one sports like tennis, boxing, and pitching a baseball. Also, lefties are more creative, engage in divergent thinking or the ability to create new ideas based on existing ones.

All that said, mommies, it really does not matter which hand your child prefers. The difference between lefties and right-handed people are subtle and of much greater scientific interest than any kind of practical use. However, make sure you don’t forcefully change their preference to a dominant hand.

Some famous lefties

1. Narendra Modi

2. Ratan Tata

3. Sachin Tendulkar

4. Amitabh and Abhishek Bachchan

5. Mahatma Gandhi

Feature Image Source: mommyish.com