Tooth Fairy Cost Index: What’s the Going Rate for Teeth?

My eldest daughter recently lost her first tooth. It had been wiggly for months, which gave me some time to prepare for my first encounter with The Tooth Fairy in more than two-dozen years. The last time she visited me, I was using these ridiculous (but awesome) tiny Transformers pillowcases. Now I use large (and manly) Transformers pillowcases. My wife is one lucky woman.

This sparked a heated debate in our house: What is the Current Market-Value of teeth these days? My wife suggested it was $5 for the first tooth, $1 there after. I thought 50 cents per tooth was more reasonable—after all, it’s not like The Tooth Fairy is made out of money or owns stock in Google. And my mom, who has little restraint when it comes to the grandkids, suggested that, when taking into account inflation, teeth are going for $20 a pop. (Though I think she may be artificially raising the price because a recent trip to the dentist revealed a couple of her teeth are on the way out and she’s trying to get maximum dollar for them).

So I decided to email The Tooth Fairy and ask. This wasn’t easy for me. When my relationship with The Tooth Fairy ended, I was fairly hurt. During that final visit I realized that she was amazingly superficial—after all, she was only into me because of my teeth. Once my last baby tooth was gone, so was she. The final quarter she left was basically an "It's not you, it's me" note. I also think she stole my Pete Rose autographed baseball.

But with her return fast approaching for my daughter, I decided to email her and bury the hatchet. I mean, I'd hate for my daughter to get below-market value for her teeth. We had a lengthy discussion that I had planned to keep private, but thanks to Freedom of Information Act I am forced to share with the Internet.

From:’t judge me)

Hey Tooth Fairy,

Long time no chat. I don’t want things to be awkward between us. I just need to know what the going rate is for a tooth? My wife and I were curious, just so we know what to expect when you pick up my daughter’s tooth tonight (That’s right, she finally lost it!).

Anyway, just let me know.
PS-Also, do you know what happened to my Pete Rose autographed baseball? I mean, it was there and then, poof, it was gone. Thoughts?


Oh, hey. I’ve been meaning to call, but I’ve been terribly busy these past 20-some years. You know, flying from house to house. Sneaking teeth out from under pillows. Business is HUGE. I’ve even hired an accountant. His name is Mark.
No idea what happened to your baseball. Perhaps Santa stole it. I’ve never trusted that dude.
T. Fairy


Thanks for the update. But you didn’t quite answer my question: How much is the going rate for a tooth? My wife and I have a bet going over this. If she’s right, I have to give her back massages for a month. If I’m right, I get the one thing every guy wants. You know what I’m talking about. Glee Season 1 on DVD.


I really thought Glee jumped the shark when Finn and Rachel broke up. I mean, Finn is such a wimp.


No, no, Finn had to let her go because … wait, I’m not here to talk Glee. I’m here to talk teeth. How much do you leave under the pillow when you pick up a tooth? A quarter? 50 Cents? A Dollar? More?


You remember that time you lost your tooth and left me a note instead? “Dear Tooth Fairy, I lost my tooth and then really lost it. Could you leave money anyway?” That was a bush-league move. I wasn’t going to leave you anything, but then your Mom caught me trying to sneak out. I had no idea she knew so many swear words. I had never heard the term “asshat” before.


I thought the note was sweet?

It wasn’t sweet. Hold on to your tooth!


OK, that’s all in the past. Let’s let bygones be bygones. Please, just let me know, how much for a tooth?


You know how I determine the price of the tooth? When each kid loses their first tooth, the parents leave me a letter under one of their pillows instructing me how much to give the kid. The amount has to be reasonable, but it can be different for the first tooth, middle teeth and last tooth. So really, it’s up to the parents. They just have to let me know.


I had no idea. Thanks for the heads up. I’ll be sure to leave a letter for you tonight.


No problem. Also, since you are letting bygones be bygones, I did take your Pete Rose autographed ball. Suck on that, asshat!


I knew it!

UPDATE: You will be happy to know that my daughter received $5 for her first tooth, but will be receiving $1 for every tooth moving forward. Apparently my wife and I both wrote letters, but The Tooth Fairy only reached under one of our pillows. And it wasn’t the awesome Transformers one. 

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