What’s a fidget spinner? A look at the gadget people can’t stop talking about

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We’ve all been there: filled with the insatiable need to click pens, twirl hair, or tap our fingers, just looking for a way to get more focused, soothe anxiety, or escape straight-up boredom. We’ve all needed to fidget.

Thanks to Florida-based inventor Catherine Hettinger — a really big thanks, because she hasn’t made a cent from it — a unique, entertaining, palm-sized device is here to help people better manage their nervous energy. It’s called the fidget spinner. 

The latest distraction tactic sweeping the globe is said to encourage focus and provide an outlet for people with autism, ADD, or ADHD. Sounds great, right? But there’s one serious drawback. It’s causing major controversy in schools. Read more…

More about Explainer, Autism, Adhd, Controversy, and Schools

These super-smart headphones promise to help you focus

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Plenty of top-flight headphones have noise-cancelling features to help listeners tune out the rest of the world. Now, a new set of brain-hacking headphones, Mindset, is taking everything a step further and adding distraction-canceling tech to keep you in the zone.    

Mindset, which just launched as a Kickstarter project, promises to include all the bells and whistles you’d expect from premium over-ear headphones — they’re wireless with noise-cancelling capabilities, and the sound comes from Onkyo, a Japanese luxury brand that specializes in audio equipment. But there’s something embedded in the band that makes Mindset unique. Read more…

More about Kickstarter, Attention, Neuroscience, Adhd, and Headphones

‘Can I have your meds?’ and other questions you shouldn’t ask someone with ADHD

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In my experience, living with ADHD means actual, real personal difficulty.

I buy five pairs of eyeglasses per year because I keep losing them. It drives me insane when I lose my last set of duplicate keys. Again. 

So whenever someone tells me they are, “so ADHD,”  asks questions about my medication or feels comfortable enough to give unsolicited medical advice, I find these remarks bizarrely inconsiderate. 

It’s possible these comments are rooted in the belief that some don’t consider ADHD a real disorder. This stigma leads to varying, incorrect opinions, such as the assumption that ADHD is an excuse to medicate children that have trouble focusing or is caused by bad parenting. And, apparently, it leads to people not knowing how to talk about it. Read more…

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The Kickstarter campaign that’s making fidgeting sexy

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Can fidgeting be sexy? Ask the self-proclaimed Didget Babes, and you can probably guess their answer.

Fidgeting is something we all do, but it’s especially helpful for people with ADD, ADHD and autism. A new line of luxury devices from the Didget Babes, a design duo, goes beyond simply normalizing the action — it destroys stigma by making fidgeting liberating, productive and, yes, even sexy. 

The Didgets Collection was created by Belen Tenorio, a New York City-based product designer living with ADHD, and Rachael Elder, a creative writer and self-identified fidgeter living in New Zealand.  Read more…

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