Fidget spinners: Therapy or distraction?

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The newest toy addiction, fidget spinners, have made their way into the fingertips of many youngsters and adults too. These are devices that are portable enough to fit in the palm of your hand. Fidget spinners contain weighted propellers which allow you to spin it for several seconds. They are known to reduce stress and anxiety, not only in children but also in adults. However, in recent times, a lot has been spoken about this tiny toy – its benefits and disadvantages.

Why is it believed to help autistic kids?
When in application, the fidget spinner spins around and creates a hypnotic effect. This is meant to relieve stress and anxiety as your brain is involved in a manner, which provides you comfort in stressful situations. Therefore, when an autistic child plays with a fidget spinner, the brain of the child is believed to release happy or stress relieving hormones. The continuous movement of the gadget helps in keeping the child focussed on one activity which involves a great deal of concentration.

“A fidget spinner is a normal toy that parents can give to a child who is restless as it will help calm the child. There is nothing in a fidget spinner which makes it ‘special’ for an autistic child,” says Merry Barua, founder, Action for Autism. Merry also talks about how fidget spinners being sold in the name of ‘special toys for autistic kids’ is nothing but a marketing gimmick. However, she does add that while it can help pacify a child with special needs, it is wrong to call a fidget spinner a toy for autistic kids.

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Are fidget spinners really for autism and ADHD?
Fidget spinners, according to popular opinion, are meant to provide a pleasing sensory experience. Though no study confirms its effect on those suffering with autism and ADHD. While a lot of research has gone into finding out how a simple fidget spinner can help with neurological disorders, a documented study is yet to be published by any reputed institute.

A recent research by John Hopkins University cleared some air on its medical use. The research says as follows: “These were never made as a medical aid or medical device, and these claims come from smart marketing on the internet.”

Consequently, it is safe to say that fidget spinners came in as a marketing gimmick more than anything else. It is common for children to get addicted to a new toy and take it with them wherever they go. Fidget spinners provide the child with stress management as it helps distracting them when in a confused or stressed situation.

Many schools and institutes have dissed the fidget spinner as a distraction more than anything else. This is because once the user starts spinning the little device, due to the sensory experience that it provides, he or she can go on for hours together.

Work place stress buster?
Just like for children, a fidget spinner works as a stress buster for working millennials as well. This is because, when a person is playing with fidget spinner while working, their concentration is at its peak. This helps them focus on one point or the piece of work they are currently working on.

When sitting on your desk, working on ten different things at the same time, a fidget spinner can help provide one point of concentration that helps busting stress.

Agencies

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