Although left-handers are forced to live in a right-hander’s world, some products are still specially designed for left-handers (luckily). One such product is a computer mouse. That’s right! The left-handed computer mouse does exist, and it is surprisingly used by both left-handers and right-handers.
So the real question that you may be asking yourself right now is “should I use a left handed mouse?” Well, yes, maybe you should. No matter whether you are left-handed or right-handed, you should consider using a left-handed mouse. Read on to learn how a left-handed mouse actually works and why a left-handed mouse is good for both right-handers and left-handers. We’ll also show you how to turn a symmetric right-handed mouse into a left-handed one.
Table of Contents
- 1 How Does a Left Handed Mouse Work and How is it Different from a Right Handed One?
- 2 Should I Use a Left-Handed Mouse Even If I’m Right-Handed?
- 2.1 1. It Eliminates the Risk of RSIs and MSDs
- 2.2 2. It Dissuades People from Borrowing
- 2.3 3. It Frees Up Your Right Hand and Allows you to Multitask
- 2.4 4. It Diversifies Your Skill Set
- 2.5 5. It Pushes You to Use the Keyboard More
- 2.6 6. It Prevents Injuries
- 2.7 7. It Is Scientifically Proven to Improve Your Posture
- 3 Do I Need a Left Handed Mouse If I’m Left-Handed?
- 4 How do I Make my Mouse Left Handed?
How Does a Left Handed Mouse Work and How is it Different from a Right Handed One?
Since we use our index fingers to click on the mouse and the left mouse button is the most used one, traditional mice are designed and configured for right-handers by default.
If a left-hander tries to use these mice, they either have to adapt to using it with their right hand or place it on the left side and use the middle finger of their left hand to press the left-click button, which is really awkward for most people. A left-handed mouse that is specially designed for left-handers makes this inconvenience go away by swapping the buttons. These mice are designed with their right buttons acting as left-click buttons and left buttons acting as right-click buttons. Just place them on the left side of the keyboard and use them naturally as you would as a left-hander.
Should I Use a Left-Handed Mouse Even If I’m Right-Handed?
Well, yes. It is recommended to use a left-handed mouse even if you are right-handed. According to several studies, using a left-handed mouse is beneficial in many ways for a right-hander. If you are a right-hander and you have had problems with your hand or wrist due to continuously using a mouse, you are not alone.
Many right-handers and left-handers who spend hours using a mouse every day complain of strain and fatigue in their hands and fingers. That’s where a left-handed mouse comes in to save the day (and possibly your wrists). Following are some key reasons why you should use a left-handed mouse even if you are a right-hander:
1. It Eliminates the Risk of RSIs and MSDs
Repetitive Strain Injuries (RSIs) and Musculoskeletal Disorders (MSDs) are serious possibilities if you are not using an ergonomic mouse and you use your mouse for hours every day. Performing the same actions daily leads to fatigued muscles, connective tissues, and tendons, leading to injuries over time. By swapping your mouse into your left hand, you will be dividing the strain on different muscles and reducing the chances of pain, numbness, fatigue, and tingling in your dominant hand.
2. It Dissuades People from Borrowing
Your coworkers may often freely borrow your mouse for a “quick task,” which feels a little annoying. You can dissuade them from doing so by switching to a left-handed mouse. If you have a left-handed mouse, your coworkers won’t even ask to borrow it as it will be something new for them to learn and use.
3. It Frees Up Your Right Hand and Allows you to Multitask
If you switch to a left-handed mouse, you will get the job done more efficiently and productively as your right hand will be free to do other tasks. This is especially very favorable if you are right-handed. By switching to a left-handed mouse, you will be freeing up your dominant hand (the right hand) to carry out important tasks such as taking notes, typing, or doing anything you would normally do while still using your left hand to click. You won’t have to shift your notepad and pen every time you want to note something down. If you’re short on time but need to eat or take a call, you can do those things with your right hand.
4. It Diversifies Your Skill Set
Switching to a left-handed mouse allows you to expand your skill set. You can even call yourself an ambidextrous person who knows how to use a device with both hands. Although switching may feel a little challenging at first, you’ll get used to it after a while. You can read about how it’s possible to teach yourself to be left-handed while doing various tasks.
Once you have completely gotten used to it, you will discover a whole arena of other things you can do with your left hand, such as holding a phone or using utensils.
5. It Pushes You to Use the Keyboard More
By using a mouse placed on the left side of the keyboard, you will be constantly reminded to use it at a minimum. You will instead find yourself using the keyboard more, and you will only use the mouse when it is really needed. You can minimize your continuous movements this way and give your left hand some rest. Learn keyboard shortcuts to work more efficiently.
6. It Prevents Injuries
Right-handers may be bummed out to learn that the chances of their right hands getting injured in an accident are higher than their left hands. An injury in your right hand may leave you unable to work and seriously take a toll on your productivity. But if you are used to using a left-handed mouse, it won’t affect your productivity much.
7. It Is Scientifically Proven to Improve Your Posture
According to a study, people find it very easy to adjust to a left-handed mouse. Using a left-handed mouse showed improvements in users’ posture, particularly in shoulder flexion and abduction, if they needed to use the mouse along with the keyboard’s numeric pad. Most of the volunteers in this study decided to switch to a left-handed mouse for good. If this doesn’t sound appealing to you, another option would be to get yourself a left-handed keyboard.
If you want to work in the comfort of your bed or armchair, consider adding a left-handed lapdesk to your arsenal.
Do I Need a Left Handed Mouse If I’m Left-Handed?
If you are a left-handed person who has been using a right-handed mouse all your life, you may be asking yourself whether you really need a left-handed mouse. Well, you have three options:
- You can use a right-handed mouse with your right hand.
- You can use a right-handed mouse with your left hand and switch finger use.
- You can make your mouse left-handed and use it with your left hand.
If you choose the first option, you won’t have to change anything, and you can continue working like you used to. However, using a right-handed mouse with your right hand is bound to give you Musculoskeletal Disorders (MSDs) and Repetitive Strain Injuries (RSIs) due to continuous usage.
If you choose the second option, you will be using a right-handed mouse with your dominant hand (the left hand) so you may find it natural to use. However, when using a right-handed mouse with your left hand, you will have to use your middle finger for the left-click button and the index finger for the right-click button, which is really inconvenient and may give you a serious ache in your fingers and wrist. If you choose the last option and make your mouse left-handed, you will get to enjoy a perfect fit for your dominant hand. You will also avoid the risk of hand injuries, fatigue, RSIs, and MSDs. Moreover, you will be forced to use the keyboard more, which is ideal.
The only problem you may face is getting used to this new change. You may find it a little challenging at first, but within a week or two, you will be at it like you’ve always been using your mouse this way.
How do I Make my Mouse Left Handed?
If you already have a mouse at home, you don’t need to buy a special left-handed mouse. You can simply make your right-handed mouse left-handed by changing the button and pointer configurations from the Control Panel or Settings on Windows 10 and 11.
To swap the primary and secondary buttons on your mouse for left-handed using Settings, follow these steps:
- On a Windows 10 PC, go to Settings.
- Click on Devices > Mouse.
- Click on the “Select your primary button” drop-down menu and select “Left.”
Your primary and secondary buttons will then be swapped for left-handed use.
You can also change the primary button of your mouse from the Control Panel. To do so:
- Open the Control Panel on your PC.
- Go to “Hardware and Sound.”
- From the “Devices and Printers” section, select the “Mouse” option.
- Now go to the “Buttons” tab and select the checkbox next to “Switch primary and secondary buttons.”
- Click on “Apply” and then “OK.”
Once you have applied these changes, the primary and secondary buttons on your mouse will be swapped.
If you want the ultimate left-hand experience, you can also make your mouse pointer left-handed. Doing so tilts your mouse cursor the other way so that you find them more convenient when using it with your left hand.
To make your mouse pointer for Windows 10 or 11 left-handed, follow these steps:
- Download the Windows 10 left-handed mouse pointers from here.
- Extract the contents of the zip file on your computer.
- Now go to your PC’s mouse settings and open “Additional mouse options” from the right.
- Go to the “Pointers” tab and click on “Browse” under “Customize.”
- Go to the folder where you extracted the downloaded file’s contents and select the respective left-handed cursor for each pointer setting.
You will be given the following corresponding changes to make your pointer left-handed.
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