The Brain-Boosting Benefits of Brushing with Your Non-Dominant Hand

Apr 19, 2023By Dr. Lucy Andrews


Have you ever tried brushing your teeth with your non-dominant hand?  It might sound like a simple task but the benefits go far beyond dental hygiene.  Research has shown that practicing activities such as brushing your teeth with your non-dominant hand can actually boost brain function and improve cognitive abilities.

When you use your non-dominant hand for tasks like brushing your teeth you are engaging the less dominant hemisphere of your brain.  This can lead to increased neural connections and improved overall brain function.  It's like giving your brain a workout!

non-dominant hand brushing

Enhanced Cognitive Function

Using your non-dominant hand requires more focus and concentration as it challenges your brain to perform tasks in a new and unfamiliar way.  This increased mental effort can lead to improved cognitive function, including enhanced memory, attention, and problem-solving skills.

Studies have shown that activities that require the use of the non-dominant hand can lead to greater activation in the brain's contralateral hemisphere, which is associated with higher cognitive functions.  So, by simply switching hands while brushing your teeth, you could be giving your brain a significant boost.

cognitive function

Neuroplasticity and Brain Health

Practicing tasks with your non-dominant hand can also promote neuroplasticity, which is the brain's ability to reorganize and form new neural connections.  This is essential for maintaining brain health and preventing cognitive decline as we age.

By challenging your brain with new and unfamiliar tasks, such as brushing with your non-dominant hand, you are promoting the growth of new neural pathways and enhancing overall brain function.  This can have long-term benefits for cognitive health and resilience.

Improved Coordination and Motor Skills

In addition to the cognitive benefits, using your non-dominant hand can also help improve coordination and motor skills.  By practicing activities with your non-dominant hand, you are training your brain to become more adaptable and versatile, which can have positive effects on overall physical coordination and dexterity.

So, the next time you reach for your toothbrush, consider giving your brain a little extra exercise by using your non-dominant hand.  It's a simple and effective way to boost brain function and promote overall cognitive health.

coordination and motor skills