Fidget spinners: What on earth are they?

© DC Thomson
Finlay Kimmmet, age 12, with his fidget spinner, outside Hayat's Store in Hapyhillock.

Fidget spinners are the latest craze to capture the imagination of children across the globe.

However they are starting to cause controversy, with many schools banning the toys.

But what are fidget spinners? And are they dangerous?

Craigiebarns Primary in Dundee is the latest school to have banned the devices, doing so on safety grounds and citing fears children could get hurt by using them in the playground.

The primary sent a letter to parents calling the toys a “distraction”.

A man spins a fidget spinner.© Getty
A man spins a fidget spinner.

It added the ban had stretched from the classroom to the playground because: “If they were to be thrown they could really hurt someone.

“Please keep these fancy fidgets a home. Thank you for your support in this.”

However, shops in Dundee have been struggling to keep up with the demand for fidget spinners.

The handheld gadgets work by being twirled between your fingers, and were first developed as means for children with ADHD or autism to relieve stress.

They operate by having a piece of plastic spin around a central bearing, and are believed by many to have health benefits.

The central “pad” of the toy is held whilst the rest of it spins, and they can also be used to perform tricks.

Though only becoming popular in 2017, fidget spinners have been around since the 1990s.

The toy was invented by Florida woman, Catherine Hettinger, to keep her young daughter, Sara, entertained.

Fidget Spinners are not only used by youngsters, with Forbes Magazine declaring them the “must have office toy for 2017”.