Fidget spinners can be found everywhere you look lately, but there are a few hidden costs to this trend. The dangers of fidget spinners aren't just limited to annoying teachers and frustrating parents. Parents have reported chipped teeth, cuts, bruises, and damaged property. When kids trick out or "mod" their spinners, things can get really dangerous. Like the latest trend of duct taping razor blades to the spinner spokes -- a clear no-no on any sane person's list.
Fidget spinners can be a lot of fun when used correctly. What began as a little distracting toy has turned into the next big craze to replace Pokemon Go!. And just as the summer of 2016 saw distracted gamers walking off cliffs, into traffic, and into walls, the summer of 2017 is seeing trips to the E.R. due to the dangers of fidget spinners.
Taken at face value, fidget spinners don't rate too high on the potential danger scale. Making your kids wear a helmet or knee pads while practicing basic tricks would seem just plain silly. That said, there are safety tips that no parent in their right minds would think need repeating but, based on emergency room reports and "epic fidget spinner fail" YouTube videos, many children clearly need to hear:
- Kids ages 3 and under can choke on the caps, bearings, washers, and other removable parts.Keep spinners away from children under 3 and supervise play for preschoolers.
- Warn kids about the hazards of attaching sharp objects like razor blades or pencils.
- Kids may discover that spinning spinners create a neat breeze, but caution them from spinning it near their mouths.Fast-spinning fidget spinners can crack a baby tooth -- or new adult tooth -- very easily.
- For more advanced spinners, keep throwing tricks outdoor sin a big, open space, clear of any little brothers, pets, fragile objects, windows, open cans of soda, crystal vases... you get the picture. What goes up must come down, and fast-moving objects can knock things over, hurt innocent bystanders, and cause general damage more easily than you'd think.
- For kids who do throwing tricks, advise them to, only toss the spinner as high as their shoulders to avoid hitting a nerye or chipping a tooth.
Don't let the potential dangers of fidget spinners keep you from picking one up for your favorite kid, however. They can provide hours of fun as kids learn tricks and discover principles of physics like force, torque, and friction in action!
Cara J. Stevens is the author of Fidget Spinner Tricks, Hacks & Mods: Amaze Your Friends with Spectacular Spinner Secrets! From Racehorse For Young Readers, available July 11 wherever books are sold. She is a freelance writer living in California with her husband, two children and one small fluffy puppy. She has authored more than two dozen books for children and adults, and writes frequently about Minecraft, parenting, hair care, DIY crafts, food and healthy living. Follow her on Facebook and Twitter @ATFMCara.