The Tooth Fairy is known as America’s fairy. She was introduced to the world in 1927, in a book called “The Tooth Fairy,” by Esther Watkins Arnold. We often imagine the Tooth Fairy looking like something out of a Disney movie, but her intentions and origin are unknown to most. Sure, we know she comes into children’s bedrooms, collects teeth from under their pillow, and leaves a token of her appreciation.
But why does she do these things? Maybe your child has asked and you want to give a good explanation, or perhaps you are just curious about learning about a childhood memory that has left you with questions through adulthood.
The Tooth Fairy Story
According to Watkins, the Tooth Fairy resides by a riverbank in the roots of a nice, big tree that overlooks the landscape. She collects all sorts of human trinkets that wash up on her beach from the river. Not only does she love collecting these items, but she can also feel the person’s memories by touching the items. The one item she always wanted and missed from her collection: a tooth from a child. Children are so excited after losing teeth that she wanted to feel those memories and hold onto them as children grow older.
A little girl was playing by the riverbank one day and had a loose tooth. The Tooth Fairy got the courage to ask the small girl if she could have the tooth. Although she hadn’t lost her tooth yet, the small girl agreed. She said she would put it under her pillow at home when it fell out and the Tooth Fairy was more than welcome to have it. It eventually fell out and the Tooth Fairy visited her at home to collect the tooth. She left a silver coin in its place to thank the little girl.
Upon waking up, the little girl was so excited about her silver coin, that she told everyone at school. Eventually, children from all over the world began putting their baby teeth under their pillow for the Tooth Fairy to collect.
What are kids earning these days?
Almost a century later, the Tooth Fairy is still visiting children and replacing their lost teeth with money. But what started out as a small silver token has evolved into children earning cash. A recent study shows that children are earning three to five dollars per tooth. Earning more or earning less per tooth can lead to animosity on the playground, so it is best to stay within this range.
When does the Tooth Fairy stop visiting?
The Tooth Fairy stops visiting children at different ages. Some may keep the tradition until all baby teeth are gone, but others think 12 years is a little too old to continue the game. One thing is for sure: children grow up too fast, so our two cents: keep the tradition alive as long as you can. Plus, you may realize later that as the Tooth Fairy, you miss the tradition, too!