23 February 2012
The side of your head that you choose to hold your mobile phone up to is governed by whether you are left- or right-side brain dominant, researchers have found.
Results from 700 responses to a survey about mobile phone use found a strong correlation between brain dominance and the ear people use for phone calls. People holding their phone to their right ear being thought to be left-brain dominant and vice versa.
Someone who is left-brain dominant is said to be more logical, analytical and objective, whereas someone with right-brain dominance is thought to be more thoughtful, intuitive and subjective.
More than 70 per cent of people hold their phone up to the ear on the same side as their dominant hand, the researchers from Henry Ford Hospital, Detroit, have found. They did the study after observing that most people hold their phone to their right ear.
“This practice seems illogical given the fact that it is a bit challenging to listen with the right ear and take notes with the right hand,” the researchers said in a poster presented at an otolaryngology conference in San Diego.
However their findings suggested mobile phone handedness was predictive of hemispheric dominance, although having a hearing problem “does impact ear preference” for phone use, they said.
The findings had several implications including that it offered additional evidence that mobile phone use and brain, head and neck tumours may not be linked.
If there was a strong connection there would be far more people diagnosed with cancer on the right side of their brain, head and neck - the dominate side for cell phone use, co-author Dr Michael Seidman said in a statement.
Another implication from the work was that it may be possible to develop a less invasive, lower cost option to establish the side of the brain where speech and language occurs instead of using the Wada test which involves injecting anaesthetic into the carotid artery.