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Do fidget spinners really work?

Do fidget spinners really work?

In recent years, a toy was invented that caused quite a stir in many sectors, especially in the educational and medical fields. Called fidget spinner, it was introduced in the market not only as a toy but more as an antidote for a number of ailments especially among children. Although, Florida inventor Catherine Hettinger created the first prototype model as early as 1993; however, it was only last April of this year when the toy attained popularity.

What a fidget spinner is?

As a toy, a fidget spinner is made from metal or plastic; it consists of a central ball bearing in a structure that is multi-lobed and flat. It is designed to spin using very little effort along its axis. Working like a helicopter or an electric fan, these colorful spinners can be twirled easily in one’s finger for a few minutes and one feels a pleasing and calming effect. 

Uses of fidget spinners

1. Fidget spinners were originally created to aid sufferers of stress. They are intended to soothe and assist kids dealing with issues of sensory processing. 

2. More than just toys, these small colorful devices are sold as healing aides for sufferers of anxiety, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and autism. Fidget toys have been recommended as healing aides by counselors, teachers and therapists to manage issue affecting attention.

3. Health Stress management stated that fidget toys can complement medications and psychotherapy, as well as other treatment methods, to get the best results. However, effectiveness level can vary from one case to another.

Do fidget spinners really work?

Studies conducted at NYC Cohen Children's Medical Center Current Opinion in Pediatrics journal found that no deep research had been focused on the link between these spinners and kids' attention. Today, entire schools in both United States and U.K have banned fidget spinners due to distractibility issues. 

1. Doctors’ opinions of fidget spinners are mixed? Some gave positive opinions that sensory tools like fidget spinners have long since been researched on, promoted and used by the medical community. However, a voice of dissent comes from many doctors who viewed the growing popularity of fidget spinners as more sources of nuisance than tool to assist kids to focus. They considered these toys as distracting factors with their attractive & vibrant colors and interesting shape; there are even some that can create noises.

2. Some scientists and doctors believed that the distracting factors of a fidget spinner as nuisance outweigh its benefits. Their appealing aspects can visually draw a child’s attention away from the teacher’s lessons or reading materials used in the classroom. 

3. Schools and teachers across the nation have established bans on fidget spinners. Although banning can be appealed on a case-by-case basis; however, many teachers are united in their accusation of this tool as annoying. 


The overall consensus is that fidget spinners are more of toys than healing tools. With all these negative issues going around about fidget spinner, this ball bearing device as toy and antidote has a hard time in keeping its head above water. Since there are other options for safer toys and better antidotes against ADHD, the workability of fidget spinners is not really working! 

Erkut N.