So, how much money does your tooth fairy leave…?

March 21, 2008 at 5:59 am | Posted in Uncategorized | 3 Comments

A kid in my daughter’s class gets five bucks for every tooth…apparently, his tooth fairy comes from the other side of the fairy tracks (the rich side), because Isabel only gets $1 for the regular teeth and $2 for the front four.

Now, according to the National Institute of Health, kids have 20 teeth; so little Johnnie’s tooth fairy is going to drop $100 on teeth between now and the time he’s 14 – and he’s going to brag about every dollar. In the meantime, Isabel’s tooth fairy is making the conscious choice to NOT give her $5 per tooth.

cha-ching!… $5-$10-$15-$20…

I gave Isabel’s tooth fairy a call recently, to talk about this situation, and she (tooth fairies are woman, right? – I’m not trying to be sexist here, but I just can’t imagine a guy spending an extra five bucks on anything less than, say, a craftsmen wrench.) patiently explained that, in more than one way, it doesn’t pay to over-pay kids for their teeth.

She pointed out the fact that a six year old doesn’t really understand that money matters – they’ll have a long life to figure that out, so why start so early? Furthermore, she asked, what does a six year old need $5, $10, $15, etc. dollars for anyway? Granted, a “My Pretty Pony” is going for about $4.76 at Wal Mart, but if we teach our kids anything, shouldn’t it be the joy of waiting…saving up and finally being able to get something (remember my “Let Her In” post…) ? Wouldn’t it be better for her (the tooth fairy that is) to give Isabel $1 for each tooth, and invest $4 in a 529 college fund? That way, she (and Isabel) could take advantage of the wonders of compound interest…

Our tooth fairy had some excellent points. When I ask her what was up with little Johnnie’s tooth fairy, she said, “Tooth Faries these days have lost touch, know what I mean? They’ve forgotten that the wonder of childhood is about anticipation and imagination…once a kid gets the thing, it loses it’s magic.”

I couldn’t agree more.



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  1. My son just went to sleep with his tooth under a pillow and we were stumped what the fairy might leave. I said 50 cents to a $1, as I got a quarter. She said $5, since she got $2. Inflation.

    My Google search that led me to your site also turned up the following:

    Tooth whitening can cost $500-$2,000.

    Surgical extraction can cost $152 to $1,000 or 400 Philippine pesos.

    Many years ago I came across a guy bartering in a Mexican market. I vaguely understood what was being said, but lacking context it made no sense. Eventually, the seller pulled out something similar to pliers, the buyer handed over some money, laid down, opened his mouth and made me very thankful I had proper insurance.

    In addition to making sure our kids don’t lose the magic, we should just be thankful the teeth come out naturally, painlessly and in good health.

    (I’m still thinking $2.50 tops)

  2. Hi! I was surfing and found your blog post… nice! I love your blog. 🙂 Cheers! Sandra. R.

  3. The tooth Fairy t our house started by giving my son a quarter for the fisrt tooth as he grew older the teeth got more money. One day the tooth fairy had delivored all her money before getting to my son’s tooth so she gave him a coupon for a fish for his new fishtank. He loved it much more than the money so the next tooth he recieved a coupon for the latest book in the serries he was reading the next tooth was a suprize so the tooth fairy left a gift certificate to take his mom out to dinner since she pays all the dentist bills. At age 12 My son still gets excited in anticipation as to what the tooth fairy will say and the coupon he will recieve – the dinner with mom has been the biggest hit so far! The tooth Fairy was criticized by others for the amount of money one tooth cost but the pride my son had taking me out to dinner was priceless!

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