Ever noticed that almost every child is looking for a toy to either hold or play with.? Or maybe they have one in hand, twirling it, spinning it, and bending it back and forth. They are fiddling around with it, and often when you think they should be listening.
The real term for this fiddling around is called fidgeting. I have heard it said, and I have said it as a parent, “Stop fidgeting!” Often we are concerned that the fidgeting process might cause the child to become less focused and productive.
Wait for a moment. Fiddle with this thought …
The ADHD/FastBraiin child might be a better listener if they are fidgeting with something. People doodle when they take notes or talk on the phone. They roll a pencil between their fingers. They twist paper clips into small modern works of art. All while listening, responding, and making decisions.
Fastbraiin children need these “fidgets” also. As strange as it seems, it may increase their level of focus. Children with ADHD tend to perform better when they have something in their hands that they can fidget with.
Here is a very simple medical explanation.
Movement increases brain waves which increases levels of the neurotransmitters dopamine and norepinephrine. This is the same thing that occurs when taking an ADHD medication. These chemicals help with focus and inattention. That nervous looking, bending back and forth, or a (gear tie- my favorite fidget), or the spinning of a smooth rock may help cause the ADHD/FastBraiin to focus.
“Fidgeting activates the same regions of the brain as ADHD medication.”
OK. There is bad fidgeting, or “bad fidgets.” When someone is drumming on the table or popping bubble wrap, those are obvious to everyone. Good ADHD fidgets are silent, they don’t draw significant attention, are safe, and can be enjoyed without full engagement. There are many online sites that sell ADHD fidget objects but there are many that are easily accessible and that you may have around the house.
Here are a few ADHD fidgets that you might find help your FastBraiin child to focus.
- Chewing gum (not the kind for blowing bubbles, ½ stick)
- Silly putty
- Smooth stone in pocket
- Kneadable eraser or sticky tac
- Velcro stuck under the desk
- Resistance bands used for exercise stretched across the legs of a chair
- Stress balls made from two balloons filled with flour
- Rubber band or bands
- Doodle pen and art paper
- Bottle caps
Maybe you want to have several ADHD fidgets in the child’s homework area or close by so they can fidget — and focus. If you’re looking for more help on how to improve ADHD focus, be sure to check out our other resources.