Fidget Spinners Producing Local Success Stories

FORT SMITH (KFSM) -- Fidget Spinners are an item originally intended to help children and adults with autism, attention deficit disorders or anxiety.

The spinning motion and the item itself gives a person something to focus on. In Fort Smith, employees of Learning Oasis Toy Zone said they have noticed the effectiveness of the fidget spinner goes far beyond a toy.

"We've had a story told to us that a kid picked at her eyebrows. They got her one of these to do and her eyebrows have grown back because she has something to do with her hands," Toy Zone employee Deanne Peek said.  "We had another parent say that her kid can't sit still to do homework or watch a movie. She got him one and he sits and will do his homework or sit through a whole movie if he's doing something. We had a church come in and they bought a whole set of them. They have a group. I think it's called Celebrate Recovery. He wanted one for them to hold while they talk. He said it helps them open up more if they are focusing on something besides their nerves."

The store stocks all shapes, sizes, colors and superhero themes that kids want to play with.

Stories of mishaps with the toys have been heard by store owners who carry the product.

"That's why I wanted to focus on the good, not the bad because you can find bad in anything. The child in Texas who put it in her mouth and swallowed it. It's not supposed to go in your mouth," Peek said.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission is currently investigating that exact story. According to reports, the child had surgery to remove a bearing caught in her esophagus.

The fidget spinner craze has morphed into so much more than buying a normal fidget spinner. Many stores now carry fidget toys. It's an extension of the regular fidget spinner. Toy Zone carries a whole line of these toys they call the 'Fidget Zone'.

"We have all kinds of different things to fidget with. We have sensory things, wooden blocks on elastic. The tangle products are awesome," Peek said.