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The Tooth Fairy loosened purse strings in 2012

OAK BROOK – How much are kids getting for lost baby teeth these days? The average gift from the Tooth Fairy was $2.42 last year, up 32 cents from $2.10 in 2011, according to Delta Dental's The Original Tooth Fairy Poll. The most common amount left under the pillow was $1 (51 percent).

According to the poll, the Tooth Fairy was even more generous with kids who lost their first tooth, leaving more money for the first tooth in 46 percent of homes. On average, the amount given for the first tooth was $3.49.

“Leaving gifts from the Tooth Fairy is a great way to help make losing teeth less scary and enjoyable for kids,” said Bill Hupp, Delta Dental Plans Association’s spokesman. “Delta Dental encourages parents to use the Tooth Fairy as an opportunity to talk about good oral health even before a child loses the first tooth. Caring for baby teeth is important, as they help children chew and speak properly and hold space for permanent teeth.”

In 2012, the Tooth Fairy visited nearly 90 percent of U.S. homes with children who lost a tooth.

“It’s hard for young kids to fully comprehend the importance of oral health, but tapping into a child’s imagination can make taking care of teeth more exciting,” Hupp said.

For more information, visit www.theoriginaltoothfairypoll.com.

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