Ambidextrous, or mixed-handed, children are twice as likely to have difficulties with language and to perform poorly at school as their right-handed classmates, new research suggests.
In their teenage years, ambidextrous children were twice as likely to show symptoms of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), and to continue having problems with language, it was discovered. The findings are thought to be linked to differences in the brain.
Researchers from Imperial College London studied around 8,000 children at the ages of 7 or 8, and again at 15 or 16. Of the children in the study, 87 were ambidextrous.
“Our results should not be taken to mean that all children who are mixed-handed will have problems at school or develop ADHD,” lead researcher Dr Rodriguez assured the BBC, stressing that mixed-handed children were at a “higher risk” of having certain problems.
Mixed-handedness has also been linked to dyslexia in past studies. One in every 100 people is ambidextrous.