Most of us remember the excitement we felt when our baby teeth became wiggly and fell out. We knew soon, we’d be visited by the tooth fairy (hopefully, with cash in tow!). Certainly losing a tooth is a rite of passage for children in the U.S., but what about in the rest of the world?
Here’s a fun look at how tooth fairy traditions are carried out in other countries.
United States, Canada, England, Portugal, Denmark, Australia
Just like in the U.S., Canada, England, Portugal, Denmark and Australia honor the tale of the tooth fairy which involves a fantasy woman with wings who visits children while they sleep. The fairy brings a reward for the tooth; a payment ranging from a few cents to five dollars or more!
Spain, Peru, Chile, Venezuela, Columbia
Many Spanish-speaking countries have a similar tradition to the tooth fairy, but they have a mouse called Ratoncito Perez. When a child loses a tooth, they will place it underneath their pillow for El Raton de Los Dientes to collect overnight. He leaves a small gift in exchange, making for a very happy child the next morning.
Ratoncito Perez also lives in Argentina where children will place their tooth in a glass of water him. When the Tooth Mouse arrives, he will drink the water, take the tooth, and stuff the gift in the glass.
In France, they also have a tiny mouse that collects children’s teeth in return for gifts. When a child has lost a tooth and placed it under their pillow, La Bonne Petite Souris will visit and leave a sweet treat or money as the child’s reward.
In South Africa, children place a lost tooth inside a slipper for a gift from the Tooth Mouse.
China, Vietnam, Japan, Korea, India, Thailand, Cambodia
Instead of receiving money for their baby teeth, many children toss them for good luck! When children lose a tooth from their upper jaw, they throw it on the ground or put it below the floor, while teeth lost from their lower jaw are thrown onto the roof, with the hope that straight new teeth will grow in correctly toward the old teeth. Some children will even make a wish as they throw each tooth that the strong tooth of a mouse will replace their lost tooth!
The Middle East
In Iraq, Jordan, Egypt, Libya, and Oman, children throw their lost teeth up to the sky and ask the sun to send them strong adult teeth.
What are Your Tooth Fairy Traditions?
Whether a child believes in a tooth fairy, a tiny tooth-collecting mouse, or tossing their teeth onto a roof, losing a tooth is an exciting moment. What are your tooth fairy traditions?
Remember to encourage your child to keep their baby teeth healthy and strong by brushing twice a day for two minutes each time, flossing daily, and coming to visit us every six months.
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