Children who lose a tooth and put it under their pillow are being generously rewarded by the tooth fairy, despite the rising cost of living biting into family budgets.
The tooth fairy is laughing in the face of the credit crisis, leaving children with £1.22 per tooth – a 16 per cent increase in the last year and five times higher than the rate of inflation.
Children will be finding a total of £23.4million under their pillows this year in return for their teeth, from parents who will pay an average of £20 for a full mouth of milk teeth, whereas they themselves would only have received an average £6.80 from their parents.
Children in London are the wealthiest when it comes to teeth, receiving an average of £5 per tooth, a total of £100 for all their lost teeth.
The origins of giving children money in return for their teeth dates back to the thirteenth century when children were told stories of witches who would steal their teeth to make potions.
These days, parents often tell their children that their teeth will be used to build fairy castles and ward off bad spirits, but some say that they feel under pressure to leave higher amounts under the pillow, with 16 per cent feeling compelled to provide the 'going rate' for teeth.
"Parents may think that being the tooth fairy is an expensive business, but the tooth fairy can help them talk to their children about the value of money." said David White, chief executive of The Children's Mutual, which specialises in children's savings accounts
and Child Trust Funds
"And for those parents determined to ‘stick to their gums' and avoid fairy pressure, perhaps they can persuade their children to consider saving their tooth money and get into good money habits from an early age."
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