Let’s Be for Real: Do Anxiety Rings Actually Work, or Are They Just Pretty?
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An anxiety ring, also known as a fidget ring, spinner ring, meditation ring or worry ring, is an accessory people can turn to when anxiety strikes. The rings contain beads, rotating centres or other moving parts that the wearer can discreetly play with, in a bid to control their rising stress levels.
Last year, the rings gained popularity through TikTok. Today, a search of “anxiety ring” brings up nearly 77 million video views on the platform. Users promise the rings help to stop skin-picking and nail-biting and help to better concentration and distract you from anxiety.
“Anxiety rings are much more than a pretty piece,” says Naomi Rohr, founder of Australian anxiety ring brand Hey Luna.
“They’re functional jewels, designed to keep your hands busy and your mind calm. The primary purpose of anxiety rings is to divert anxious thoughts and feelings. In conjunction with other self-soothing practices like meditating, nasal breathing and grounding, the action of spinning an anxiety ring on your finger distracts part of the mind that can contribute to excessive worry and anxiety.”
Most anxiety rings consist of a base ring and an interchangeable spinner ring that can often be customised to the wearer’s taste.
@eturnalco Replying to @humanity.is.ded 🤫💍 #anxietyring #stressring #spinnerring #eturnalrings #asmr #satisfying ♬ original sound – ETURNAL
Naomi says that after buying and using an anxiety ring, she saw an immediate effect on her anxiety. “Spinning those rings, weirdly, shifted my mindset from the ‘what ifs’ to the ‘right now’,” she says.
So, what’s the science behind anxiety rings? “Anything that you can do that distracts you from thinking about what makes you anxious can help,” American psychologist Chivonna Childs, PhD tells Cleveland Clinic. “It’s a type of grounding technique where you can direct your thoughts.”
Still, though, Dr. Childs says that while anxiety rings may calm you down in stressful moments, you may need more help. “Anxiety rings are not a cure,” says Dr. Childs. “You may want to consider talking to a therapist or your doctor.”
As for which is better – anxiety rings or fidget spinners, which are toys designed with ball bearings in the middle that users can rotate or spin – Dr. Childs says it depends.
“An anxiety ring might be a better choice aesthetically,” she says. “An anxiety ring is going to allow you to be incognito. Nobody is going to know what you’re doing. You might worry [about] what other people think about you. Worrying might increase your anxiety instead of resolving it.”
So, there you have it: while anxiety rings aren’t a definite cure-all for anxiety, they can help. If you’re ready to try one, scroll down to shop some styles in Australia.
Hey Luna Dior, $127
Please note this does not replace medical advice. If you’re suffering from anxiety, please consult your medical practitioner for advice.