22 Answers

We’ve noticed lately that our 17 month old son vastly prefers using his left hand to his right. Both my husband and I are right handed and while this doesn’t bother us, we are curious how early you can tell which hand they are more likely to use and if there are any challenges we should be aware of when he starts to write, given our handing may be different to his.

Posted anonymously, 25th January 2016

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  • As said before, it will probably become more apparent as they get older. I wouldn’t worry about it – things are set up in schools to be fairly easy no matter what handedness you are. They may even be ambidextrous!

  • My son is left-handed and my eldest daughter is right-handed. I use both, though write best with my right hand. I can’t remember exactly when I knew their preferences, but school or even kinder will show you the answer! When they have to write, their dominant hand will be known. Hopefully.

  • I came across this with my foster son. I noticed when I’d gibe him colouring pencils. It’s no different to being right handed as far as learning goes but he may find it difficult to mimic. Once in school they have lots of methods for furthering their development regardless of hand preference

  • My son write with his right hand but seems to do a lot of other thing with his left … I just let him use whatever feels the most normal for him… There is no right or wrong hand… The way i see it s as long as it gets done thats all that matters.

  • I think time will tell. He will just prefer and feel more comfortable writing with a certain hand or playing sport with a certain hand. Just dont force one way or another as they will develop a lot better doing something natural to them rather than forced.

  • WONDERFUL responses from moms as usual.
    MY hubby is right handed, but plays golf left handed.
    My response is what will be will be. :-)

  • YES! IN REFERENCE TO THE PREVIOUS COMMENT a few back- about being forced to use the right hand! that is what everyone was made to do back then. They did that to the school kids. It just meant that many of those children did grow up and become ambi-dextrous versus sticking with the “right” hand.

  • Children will choose a dominant hand when they start school, up until then they tend to go between hands.

  • I thought that our middle child was going to end up a lefty, but he eventually took to his right. I even gave him the suggestion to use his left if he finds it easier. He may end up like me, ambidextrous. It’s a fun skill to have and can be very confusing for others if you can do things both left and right.

  • some kids use both hands well for the first couple of years, just keep putting things in either hand, and even feet for as long as you can!

  • My Daughter has always used her left hand. We are both right handed and we don’t know why she prefers her left but as long as she has been able to hold a pencil / crayon it’s always been her left hand

  • I am a nana and left handed and allowed to be in those days forced some kids to use non-dominant hand. You can tell if it is hand they reach for things more often. It is said left handers are usually artistic in some ways. My ex is right handed oneson is and one left handed lieke me, do not think it is genetic. Right side of brain conrols eleft side therefore thatside is more dominant loo it up I did all ok. My big grandson wth newbaby brother, he is left handed too

  • Around 12 months they start doing things with one hand more than the other. Around 18 months they will show dominance for one hand, usually when eating or drawing.

  • My nearly 2 year old definitely prefers his right hand for most tasks like writing and eating but when we’re outside playing with balls or bats he prefers his left hand.

  • My maternal and child health nurse told be to put objects (crayons, forks etc) in the middle and let them choose which hand they want to pick it up with. She said they will switch hands at times but generally by 3 yrs they have they’re preferred hand.

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