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Right/Left Hand?

  1. #1
    Ureshii3 is offline Registered User
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    Right/Left Hand?

    My LO seems to have an inclination to use his right hand sometimes but I don't have any issue whenever he uses his left hand other times In fact I wouldn't mind if he could use either hand with ease But some elderly and some parents advocate the use of right hand mainly I have also been told that left-handers are generally bright in some ways, not sure about that though.

    Do u specify to your LO which hand to use mainly to hold/do things?
    Do left-handers out there face any disadvantages in any way?

  2. #2
    charade is offline Registered User
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    Here's something for you to read about left-handed people: http://www.lefthandersday.com/tour2.html

    It must be more complicated than this, but to put it very simply... people that tend to use their left hand, also tend to use the left side of the brain more often. This is a positive thing and trying to change it would be unnecessarily trying to go against nature.

    I do not specify which hand my son uses - he is just turning one. My husband was kind of hoping he would be left-handed but he's showing signs of being right handed. My mum said that I showed signs of being left-handed and she was encouraged by elders to encourage me to use my right hand so she did it but now she regrets it. Luckily, I didn't suffer any serious consequences as a result but some children do. (The stuttering of King George, about whom the Oscar winning move King's Speech was about, was attributed to being forced to use his right hand instead of left as a young child).

    The world is oriented towards right-handedness but I don't think a left-handed person faces serious challenges. I heard there are even chopsticks for left-handed people now. In fact, left-handed sportspeople have a slight advantage because their opponents are used to playing against right-handed people.

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    lesliefu is offline Registered User
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    by the age of 3-4 children should theoretically show signs of whether they prefer their right or left hand. it would be easiest to let nature take it's course...however having said that, my 3 year old daughter likes to use BOTH left hand and right hand...so i've been told my her OT that we must stop this so that she can get a solid foundation in either one, and not be so-so in both. honestly, i don't have a problem with it, it appears that which ever hand is fastest, she'll use that hand to complete the task, e.g. write with her right cause she holds the pen better, eat with her left and then right when her left hand gets tired....

    honestly can't think of many challenges the left handed would have...perhaps cutting when they are young at school, but it is possible to buy left handed scissors. the handwriting may not be as nice perhaps, but who really writes now, it's all done to computers anyways.

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    peainpod is offline Registered User
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    My 3-1/2 yo son also uses both left and right hands at different times. Is it really important to get them to choose the dominant hand, and if so, how? I notice for the harder tasks, he tends to use the left hand but since he also uses his right hand and the world being more right-handed, i habent been inclined to push the left hand pref.

  5. #5
    charade is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by lesliefu View Post
    .however having said that, my 3 year old daughter likes to use BOTH left hand and right hand...so i've been told my her OT that we must stop this so that she can get a solid foundation in either one, and not be so-so in both.
    I'm confused. There are people who use both hands - they're called ambidextrous. As long as one can get tasks done, how does it matter if they switch between hands?

    Also, why would handwriting not be nice with left-handed people. At least in English, I've known many left-handed people with great handwriting.
    thanka2 likes this.

  6. #6
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    nicolejoy is offline Registered User
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    I would have to disagree with the OT. Being ambidextrous is a huge advantage, why take that away from a kid? Yes, I would focus on them mastering skills such as writing/using scissors etc in an age appropriate way, but I would never discourage a child from using the hand that was most natural to them - UNLESS they were particularly weak on one side and it was necessary to strengthen that weak side (but not to force that side to become dominant)...

  7. #7
    rebekah is offline Registered User
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    I think since she is seeing an OT for some reason there is probably more to the story, but otherwise, yes, let her figure out which hand works for which task best.

    (excuse the extremely American/Midwestern example here but..) all of my family seem to be right handed but shoot/hunt left handed.

  8. #8
    ssheng is offline Registered User
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    I am left handed, and I remember I studied this topic in a college genetics class - the professor was very fascinated by the concept of 'handedness', because his wife and 3 kids are left handed, but he is right handed. There is without question a genetic component to handedness, but it is unclear how it is passed, and indeed, some aspects of handedness are acquired via life experience, making it further complex.

    As part of the class we took a quiz to discover what type of 'handedness' we had. You could be strongly left handed, strongly right handed, and anything in between. Example, although I am left handed for the obvious tasks of writing and eating, I use my right hand to throw, right foot to kick, right hand to cut, right hand to brush my teeth and carry my purse on my right side. Turns out I am only weakly left handed. For you right handers, you can think about all these tasks and may notice you actually veer left for some of these! :)

    And what the heck are left handed chopsticks?! That's like having a left-handed spoon/fork/pen. That made me laugh.

    Finally, in terms of writing, being left handed did affect me growing up. This is because when I was younger, we would write out our essays with pencil, and as you write you rest the left side your hand on the page. As you continue to write, you slide the hand forward left to right (if you are writing in a language that is oriented from left to right, like English), causing the edge of your hand to smear and smudge your writing, as well as get on your hand. Many left handers I knew therefore would curl their wrist up to avoid touching their writing, resulting in messier writing or just looking very odd as they wrote. I myself hated the 'left-hand hand curl' and learned to tilt my paper at an angle when writing. As I got older this tilt got more and more severe, and now I essential write top to bottom rather than left to right. Not a bad thing, just a little unique.

    But wait! you say, that means writing left handed is fine for writing Chinese top to bottom. But alas, it is not, because Chinese writing is based on brush strokes - and if you look at fine Chinese calligraphy you will see that the fat parts of stokes are where a typical right handed person would apply pressure as they swept the brush across the page. So sadly, I will never be a Chinese calligraphist. It also means that when I write in China, people are shocked and amazed. I do not exaggerate - once I was cornered by some shop ladies in China and forced to demonstrate how I would form Chinese characters while they laughed and clumsily used their left hands to imitate.


    By the way, the left-hand right brain concept is somewhat of a myth or rather misunderstanding based on split-brain research pioneered by neuroscientist Dr. Michael S. Gazzaniga in the 60s.

    (http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/01/sc...pagewanted=all)

    Above is an excellent article on his life/experiments that helps you understand how the split brain works - although that is just for fun; it is not relevant as far as anyone has proven on handedness.

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