Monday, May 4, 2020

Which brain is best ? Left or right brain more powerful ?

Human brain is the most complicated organ mankind has ever seen and yet to understand fully. Brain consists of 100 billion neurons with about 100 trillion connections or synapses. The Cerebrum which is the biggest part of the human brain has two similar hemispheres. Even though it looks similar as a mirror image externally, there are huge difference in the functions each hemisphere carries out. Usually the right sided limb movements are controlled by the left hemisphere and vice versa. This is because of a complex crossing of the neurons which control the limb movements at the level of medulla in the brainstem. Most of us think that since majority of the population is right handed, the dominant brain must be on the left side. But the fact is something different.
There is a common question in our mind,

Which side of the brain is the best or more powerful? or Which brain is the dominant brain?

left or right brain is  dominant hemisphere in human body. Usually the language function is taken care by the left hemisphere and the creative work by the right hemisphere
Many studies have been done to find out the dominance of human brain. But most of studies concluded the need of both hemisphere to work as single unit with tight interconnections for efficient performance. Certainly there are different dominant functions for each hemisphere. For example one study concluded in this way

“Right brained students who were good at responding demonstrating instructions and visuals showed a good performance in the Vocabulary part. As being open to open ended questions they were also good at the writing part. Left brained students, who were good at problem solving by logic and who can see the differences, did well in the Use of English and Reading parts. Whole brained students’ exam results seemed to be balanced because they could use both sides of their brains nearly equally.”
 This reveals the need of whole brain to work as a single unit for the better result. Generally left sided brain deals much better with language learning. Usual location of human speech centre ( Broca’s and Wernicke’s area) are in the left cerebral hemisphere. Whereas the imaginations and attention of a person lies mainly on right side.  Similarly mathematical ability and logic thinking are mainly happens on the left side. Hence we can say that there is more activity on left side when do complex problems but right side takes over when you start listening to a music and imagining something.
In another recent study carried out in about 1000 patients at University of Utah using functional MRI studies it was concluded that  there is no proof for a left or right brain dominance and similar brain activities were noted in both the sides.

Why the side of dominance important to us?

There is a common myth that left sided brain is the dominant one. It is because the main language and speech centres are on the left side in most of the individuals and it may get affected in a left sided brain injury or brain tumour. So a person with injury on the left side may not talk but he can imagine. But on the other hand a right sided injury may not show any obvious speech disturbances but it can affect one’s attention, imagination, creativity etc. This may not be as evident as the symptoms happening in a left sided injury. This may be the reason why people think that they are left brained individuals.
Another interesting fact is that there are areas called silent areas in the brain. Silent areas have very subtle functions which is not needed for carrying out routine activities. Such areas damages do not affect the persons consciousness or other cognitive functions in a major way.

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