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Mixed-handed children have a greater likelihood of having mental health, language and scholastic problems in childhood, compared to right- or left-handed children. In the study, “Mixed-Handedness is Linked to Mental Health Problems in Children and Adolescents,” published in the February issue of Pediatrics (appearing online Jan. 25), researchers studied 7,871 children (3,992 boys and 3,879 girls) at 7 to 8 years of age and again at 16 years of age. Teacher, parent and/or adolescent reports were used to assess language and educational difficulties, and mental health, including ADHD. Results indicate that mixed-handed 8-year old children, relative to right-handed, were twice as likely to have concurrent difficulties with language and scholastic performance, and 16-year old adolescents were at a considerably higher risk for probable psychiatric disturbance including ADHD symptoms.

This study supports evidence that mixed-handedness, rather than left-handedness, is associated with risk for language and behavioral problems both in childhood and adolescence. Mixed-handedness is used as a proxy for atypical cerebral lateralization. Authors suggest that future studies need to address brain circuitry underlying handedness to better understand its connection to behavior. Mixed-handedness, particularly in the presence of previous behavioral difficulties, could aid in the clinical recognition of children who are at risk for stable problems and early detection of children who are at risk.

Source The American Academy of Pediatrics

http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/177043.php



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