left-handers quicker thinkers than righties

All those parents in the ’70s and ’80s who made their left-handed children struggle to use their right hands may be kicking themselves right about now.As it turns out, left-handers might have the advantage in certain areas like, say, piloting a jet fighter or talking and driving at the same time.

A study published in the journal Neuropsychology in late 2006 suggests that left-handed people are faster at processing multiple stimuli than righties.

The research conducted at the Australian National University (ANU) seems to back up earlier studies showing that left- or right-handedness is determined in the womb and that many lefties process language using both hemispheres of the brain, as opposed to righties, who seem to use primarily the left hemisphere for this purpose.

It could mean that left-handers have a slight advantage in sports, gaming and other activities in which players face large volumes of stimuli being thrown at them simultaneously or in quick succession.

Theoretically, they could more easily use both hemispheres of the brain to manage th­at stimuli, resulting in faster overall processing and response time. It could also mean that when one hemisphere of the brain got overloaded and started to slow down, the other hemisphere could more easily pick up the slack without missing a beat.

Experts also theorize that left-handed people could fare better mentally as they move into old age and overall brain processing starts to slow down: