How to Approach the Tooth Fairy
The Tooth Fairy, not unlike the Easter Bunny or Jolly Old Saint Nick, can become a meaningful tradition for your family. Deciding whether the Tooth Fairy will be a part of your family's traditions is entirely up to you, but making the choice early is key. You can use the Tooth Fairy to your advantage to bond with your children and create memories, but also to promote healthy oral habits at the same time.
Introduce your children to the lore of the Tooth Fairy by telling them she only accepts clean, healthy teeth. Then explain how they can go about it: brush twice a day, floss at least once a day, and avoid sugary treats and carbonated drinks. You'd be surprised at how the promise of a small reward and the intrigue of this mystical fairy can get your child excited for their bedtime routine and help motivate them to care about their teeth. We are happy to reaffirm your plan for the Tooth Fairy at your child’s first dental visit to add to your credibility.
The key to using the Tooth Fairy to your advantage is keeping longevity in mind. Children lose a lot of teeth: 20, on average, to be exact. This may mean keeping rewards from the Tooth Fairy low. $10 per tooth can add up over time. In fact, the average amount left by the Tooth Fairy in the United States in 2019 was around $4.
Most children would be thrilled to find 50 cents under their pillow. To really maximize your investment, consider leaving rewards related to oral health, like a toothbrush with your child's favorite action hero or fun-flavored toothpaste. Even a simple note from the Tooth Fairy congratulating your child on their brilliant teeth she collected the night before can be an exciting alternative to money.
To take it a step further, and make collection easier on your part, create a special place for your child to put their lost teeth. Under the pillow may be a difficult spot to reach for a light-sleeping child. Constructing a decorative keepsake box to keep next to your child’s bedside for the Tooth Fairy to access can be a creative project for you and your child to work on together.
If you choose to do without the lore of the Tooth Fairy, there is still work to be done. Make sure your child understands they may notice some loose or lost teeth, typically around age 6 and reinforce those healthy habits.
Regardless of whether you choose to indulge in the myths of the Tooth Fairy, the goal is to instill healthy habits at a young age. We are happy to be a part of your child’s journey to excellent oral health at Family Dental Health Center!