Practically everyone can recollect occasions from our childhood when the Tooth Fairy traded cash for our beloved baby teeth.
It’s a popular practice for American families, and the Tooth Fairy is additionally a great tale for parents to utilize when aiming to influence their kids to take excellent maintenance of their teeth. Author Vicki Lanksy realized that children were much more concerned with managing very good oral hygiene if their parents told them that the Tooth Fairy paid more for immaculate teeth. Still, did you realize that the Tooth Fairy that we recognize is predominately exclusive to Americans? And as opposed to Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny, the foundations concerning this tradition are relatively unknown.
The Tooth Fairy What?
An instructor from the Northwestern University Dental School, Rosemary Wells, decided to perform some research on the strange inceptions of the Tooth Fairy. What she discovered was that the Tooth Fairy was not as ancient as was actually thought. While the earliest oral example of this character appeared near the turn of the 20th century, the first appearance in print occurred as recently as 1927. Wells moved ahead with her research for years and she even performed a nationwide survey that involved approximately 2,000 families. Amongst the most significant of Wells’ results is the gallery that she has established that displays all of her research and findings. And where is this museum? It’s inside of Wells’ Illinois home. Her business card even advocates her as the official “Tooth Fairy Consultant.”
The Tooth Fairy On An International Scale
While the idea of the pop culture Tooth Fairy has its origins in American customs, the procedures around lost baby teeth can vary from family to family. Children living in Russia, New Zealand, France, and Mexico place their baby teeth beneath their pillow in the belief that a mouse or rat will switch it out for money or desserts. The notion regarding this theory is that young children’s teeth may grow back as tough as a rat’s. Plenty of societies’ beliefs of the Tooth Fairy include a rodent or mouse, although it depends upon the area; also, different communities have preferences between putting the tooth under the pillow or leaving it out in the open. The French call this figure La Petite Souris, whereas the Spanish named it Ratoncito Perez.
Other popular traditions include sinking the lost tooth in a cup of water or milk–and sometimes even wine–and placing it on the night table. Tannfe, the Norwegian tooth fairy, wants the teeth in clear water considering that her old and drowsy eyes have difficulty locating the tooth somewhere else. Then, the moment the child awakes in the following morning, a silver coin will be at the bottom of the glass. For Irish kids, the tooth fairy is a young leprechaun known as Anna Bogle that mistakenly lost her front tooth. She makes use of young children’s lost teeth to take the place of her own lost teeth, and in exchange, she leaves a polished gold coin. In Asian countries, boys and girls will throw teeth lost from the bottom jaw onto the roof of their home, and teeth lost from the upper jaw will be thrown right into space underneath their house. Traditionally, the kids will shout a wish for durable, healthy teeth to develop in its place.
There are several societies that approach the practice of lost teeth with caution. For example, in Austria, kids used to bury their teeth in the areas encompassing their house. This was done to defend the children since Austrians thought that if a witch procured a young child’s tooth, the children would become cursed. On the contrary, Viking warriors believed their children’s teeth brought luck during a war, and they usually created necklaces out of the teeth to wear to battle.
Scientific Approaches To The Tooth Fairy
It could be said that the practice of these assorted tooth fairy rituals can encourage children to overcome the terror of losing teeth, as well as supply comfort at the time of this new life event. Cindy Dell Clark, an anthropologist, has claimed that a young child being given money in exchange for their lost tooth is the primary transition toward adulthood because making money during adulthood is an exercise in accountability and agency.
Rosemary Wells and Cindy Dell Clark are not the only ones who have been analyzing and experimenting with the effects of the Tooth Fairy. Visa presented that the average amount provided for a tooth in America was $3.70 in 2013. Visa’s senior director of global financial education Jason Alderman has claimed: “It is due to a combination of things: one is a reflection of an improving economy, and that parents feel they can afford to be generous in small areas.”
Our team would like to know what you believe! Did you have a special tooth fairy practice during your childhood? What did the Tooth Fairy leave behind for you? At the same time, Mom and Dad, we have a few tips on how you can convince your kids to brush and floss properly, which you can read here.