What’s the Going Rate for the Tooth Fairy?

By Dr. Kaveh Ghaboussi

Our daughter, Aubree, has only lost one tooth so far.  Like most kids, Aubree has a funny story about how it was lost.  Her tooth was so very loose but we were all excited for when she’d finally get it out.  When she finally lost it we were at a hotel and she ended up swallowing it!!!  Pretty funny for a dentist and hygienist’s kid, right?   Anyway, at breakfast we noticed the tooth was missing and searched the bed with no luck!  Luckily though the tooth fairy was very sneaky and somehow magically put a couple dollars under her pillow!  So delightful!

Smiling girl holding up a pair of one dollar bills.

Our daughter, Aubree, is now in Kindergarten.  Her class has started losing teeth as the year progresses and it’s pretty exciting!  Typically kids start losing teeth between 5 and 7 years old and then will continue to lose them until 10 or 11 years old.   Recently, with all her friends losing teeth – we’ve been asked,  


What’s the going rate for the tooth fairy?  

Since we see a lot of kids  at our office, we’ve continually ask parents and kids what they got from the tooth fairy.  We’ve heard it all from some spare change up to $20!!!  Delta Dental Insurance, which Madison Smile Solutions is a provider for, has conducted a poll since 1998 and the current rate is $3.91 per tooth.  http://www.theoriginaltoothfairypoll.com/the-original-poll/   This webpage allows your house to enter in the amount given so they can keep track and also lists the rates around the world and has some other info on different traditions. 


In many countries it’s a mouse versus a fairy that leaves a coin or prize.   In other countries, instead of leaving your tooth under the pillow, you leave it in a glass of water, on the window sill, or in a slipper!!!   I like to ask our patients from other countries what they did as kids and it is fun to learn the what their traditions are.  One storyI’ve heard is that if you lose a bottom tooth you throw it on the roof so that the new one grows up and if you lose a top tooth you bury it so that the new tooth grows down.

If your fairy wants to win fairy of the year award, check out these cool coins from Jim’s Coins in the basement of Hilldale http://www.jimscoins.com/?gclid=CLqI8Iu-_8sCFVGAaQodJrUILQ.  They have the most beautiful silver tooth fairy coin I’ve ever seen.

Tooth Fairy Coin.

They also have some Packer, Badger and even Star Wars coins that are pictured here that may be a hit with your child.

Wisconsin Coin
Star Wars Storm Trooper Coin.
Star Wars Coin.

Jim’s Coins also have coins from all different countries so that is a great opportunity to learn about different places.  I’ve heard some fairies leave the exciting and unique $2 bill.  Whatever the tradition, it is fun and a coming of age moment for kids.

At Madison Smile Solutions, we get so many questions as kids get older such as: 

  1. My kid has another row of teeth coming in behind their first row?
  2. The new teeth look yellow – is the normal?
  3. Does it feel like when they are a baby?  Does it hurt to have all those teeth coming in again?
  4. How can I get my kiddo to stop sucking their thumb/finger? 
  5. How much are braces going to cost?

We are a parent-owned dental practice whether your age is 1 or 101 we love to see your smile and answering your questions.  Click here to learn more about your child’s growth and development.  Call for your appointment 608-227-7000. Also check out our Facebook page and let us know what the going rate at your house is! 

Dr. Kaveh Ghaboussi