In the 23-year history of the Delta Dental Tooth Fairy Poll, the average cash gift reached $4.70 for the first time.
Delta Dental released new findings from its Original Tooth Fairy Poll showing that the Tooth Fairy’s average cash gift reached its highest point in the 23-year history of the poll for a total of $4.70 per tooth.
“Having the Tooth Fairy visit to celebrate the loss of a tooth is a time-honored tradition, and 2020 was no exception,” said Emily O’Brien, director of strategic communications, Delta Dental Plans Association. “Many parents welcomed the Tooth Fairy into their homes last year as a way to teach their kids about the importance of oral health and embrace a bit of much needed light-hearted fun along the way.”
Delta Dental has been analyzing the Tooth Fairy’s U.S. annual giving trends since 1998. This latest data shows the value of a lost tooth has more than tripled since its inception when the value of a lost tooth was $1.30. According to Delta Dental, 2020’s historical giving is marked by the highest all-time average gift of $4.70 per tooth, four-cents higher than the previous peak in 2017 at $4.66.
The Original Tooth Fairy Poll has typically mirrored the economy’s overall direction, tracking with the trends of Standard & Poor’s 500 Index (S&P 500) for 16 of the past 19 years. Last year, a single lost tooth was valued at $4.03, and this year’s survey shows upward growth to $4.70, a 17% increase. Over the same time, the S&P 500 also experienced growth, with a 19% increase, reaching its highest average since the inception of the Original Tooth Fairy survey.
The Northeast leads the U.S. regions in the highest average monetary gift for a lost tooth at $5.72. Meanwhile the South tracks most closely with the overall U.S. average at $4.45. The West, with nearly $2 increase over 2019, moves from third average gift to second highest this year at $5.54. The Midwest remains lower than the national average for the third year in a row, according to the survey.