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    Lefties Among Us: How They Differ From All the Rest

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    Though accounting for less than 10 percent of the world’s population, left-handedness has always been a subject of keen interest by scientists. With August 13 designated as International Left-Handers’ Day, Sputnik takes a look at the lives of “lefties” in a right-handed world.

    There aren’t many lefties around, and there are those who have to grapple with problems their right-handed friends never face.

    For example, most equipment and day-to-day articles are designed and manufactured with right-handed people in mind — those who use their right hands to perform tasks.

    Did You Know…

    …that there are also people who happen to be left-footed, left-eyed and left-eared.

    Left-nosed people are way more numerous though, with a hefty 71 percent of adults being more smell-sensitive in the left side of their noses.

    Taste-wise, we also find a lot of asymmetry as there are more taste buds on the left part of an adult’s tongue than on the right.

    There are no people who are 100-percent lefties or 100-percent righties.

    President Barack Obama wipes away tears from his eyes as he speaks in the East Room of the White House in Washington on Jan. 5, 2016, about steps his administration is taking to reduce gun violence.
    © AP Photo/ Carolyn Kaster, File
    President Barack Obama wipes away tears from his eyes as he speaks in the East Room of the White House in Washington on Jan. 5, 2016, about steps his administration is taking to reduce gun violence.

    A study of 100 student and postgraduates (50 men and 50 women) revealed that only 38 percent were true-blue righties. Of these, 40 percent were men and 36 were women.

    62 percent turned out to be partially left-handed and a whole 57 percent of those who proved to be right-handed happened to be either left-footed, left-eyed or left eared.

    By the way, men have also been found more likely to be left-handed.

    David Bowie performs during a concert in Vienna, Austria in this February 4, 1996 file photo
    © REUTERS/ Leonhard Foeger/Files
    David Bowie performs during a concert in Vienna, Austria in this February 4, 1996 file photo

    The theories about our left cerebral hemisphere responsible for our ability to think logically and the right one – for thinking in images, have long been discarded.

    Scientists have determined that dyslexia – a reading disorder, characterized by trouble with reading despite normal intelligence – is mainly caused by a loss of communication between the areas of the brain that processing our speech and those which control the way we talk.

    Researchers also found out that lefties tend to process information simultaneously by both cerebral hemispheres and that the information perceived by the right eye, ear, etc., is sent to the left hemisphere.

    As a result, the brain combines the information processed by both hemispheres offering us what we normally see and hear.

    Photo of Neil Armstrong, July 1969, in space suit with the helmet off
    © Photo: Wikipedia
    Neil Armstrong, the first human being to set foot on the moon

    Fast and Slow

    Left-handed and right-handed people are also different in the way they recover from brain injuries. Lefties are luckier as their brain is quicker to recover taking over the functions of its damaged areas, while the righties’ brain is less flexible and takes more time to recuperate.

    However, left-handed people are more subject to fits of epilepsy. While righties usually feel it coming, their left-handed peers can never recall the moment it strikes.

    All that said, the functioning of an extremely complex organ like our brain certainly calls for more research and explanations.

    Celebrities

    Here's the shortlist of “southpaws” whose names always ring a bell in everyone, whether right-handed, left-handed or ambidextrous:

    Actor Tom Cruise on the roof of Moscow's Ritz-Carlton Hotel at a photo call for Joseph Kosinski's film Oblivion. (File)
    © Sputnik/ Ekaterina Chesnokova
    Actor Tom Cruise on the roof of Moscow's Ritz-Carlton Hotel at a photo call for Joseph Kosinski's film "Oblivion". (File)

    Aristotle, Leonardo Da Vinci, Tom Cruise, James Cameron, David Bowie, Neil Armstrong, Marie Curie, Henry Ford,  Barack Obama, Pele, Rafael Nadal to name just a few.

    Related:

    Sharapova Fears Confident, Left-Handed Kvitova
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    dyslexia, left-handed people, celebrities, tests, research, David Bowie, Tom Cruise, James Cameron, Barack Obama, World
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