Most people have had visits from the tooth fairy. As children we were so excited to lose a tooth and put it under our pillow to wake up the next morning with a gift underneath. With National Tooth Fairy day approaching, we were curious where the “Tooth Fairy” legend began. To our surprise the tradition is fairly new but has evolved over time to what we know today.
The first signs of a “tooth fairy” or “tooth animal” were found in Norse and European cultures. Usually associated with a mouse or small animal, legend said that the small animal would take your baby teeth and you would receive good fortune. Over time this legend changed from it being an animal to a small mystical fairy creature. There have been so many variations of the “tooth fairy” that historians are not sure which is the original legend. She has been portrayed as big, small, young and old. It wasn’t until the late 1920’s that the “tooth fairy” became popular in most households. Walt Disney also played an essential role in helping promote fairy tale characters into everyday life. They say because of his stories and movies that the Tooth Fairy gained her popularity.
Over the years, the legend has continued to grow and so have the gifts. A recent study said that the average child receives $3.70 per tooth. Sometimes more for larger teeth or the first or last tooth lost. Some parents substitute leaving money with gifts or a small treat.
Family traditions are special for all children.
In good health, happy tooth fairy day!