Fidget Spinners Help ADHD
ADHD is a disorder that involves having trouble paying attention, impulsiveness, and hyperactivity. According to the Royal College of Psychiatrists, two out of three children end up with ADHD and carry through with them as adults. Many with ADHD feel the need the fidget in order to provide the brain with stimulation. Over twenty years ago, Fidget Spinners were invented to help those with ADHD but have become a controversy in the classrooms as well.
Fidgeting can be helpful in that according to the University of Surrey, squeezing stress balls can during varicose vein surgery can lower anxiety by 18% and pain by 22%. The Christie NHS Foundation Trust in Manchester, England said that fidgeting can also help cancer patients relieve stress before and during medical procedures. Fidget Spinners are small, ball bearing devices that you can spin around your finger through the holes. These toys can help cope with higher than average levels of energy, extreme sensitivity to the environment, and anxiety.
This toy was created in 1993 by chemical engineer Catherine Hettinger who heard about young boys throwing rocks at police officers. After hearing about this, she decided to come up with a soothing device to distract young children with. She sold thousands of them at fairs and tried to sell to toy companies. It took Hasbro twenty years to finally buy the product. There have been a lot of benefits to Fidget Spinners in keeping your hands busy and are less harmful to use as fidgeting tools compared to biting your nails, pinching your skin, or pulling your hair. By deliberately fidgeting, it is something that comes naturally that you do not need to think about. The Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology says gross motor activity, the movement of limbs, can make students perform better at processing incoming information compared to just sitting down.
Despite these benefits, schools in Massachusetts, New York, Brooklyn, Chicago, Florida, Illinois, and Manchester, England have banned the use of fidget spinners. Teachers and staff believe that Fidget Spinners are a distraction and make a lot of noise which can distract other students in the classroom. Helpful tips for kids to still be able to fidget in school in a way that does not distract others is by using stress balls or use silly putty to shape in your hands to make less noise or use your Fidget Spinner when doing your homework.
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Page last reviewed and medically fact-checked | December 12, 2017