The results of the 2024 Tooth Fairy Poll® by Delta Dental have been released. The results show that while the tooth fairy remains a popular and regular fixture in American households, the amount of money being provided by the tooth fairy has declined since 2023. Inflation and the cost of living crisis are potential causes of this. But the overall findings suggest the tooth fairy is very important.

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With the cost of living crisis hitting families across the United States, many are trying to save money and make cutbacks wherever possible.

Therefore, it will not come as a surprise that the average amount of money provided by the Tooth Fairy to children has declined since last year [1].

Dental insurance provider Delta Dental have provided the results of their most recent Tooth Fairy Poll®, with interesting results [1]!

What is the tooth fairy?

The tooth fairy has become a regular part of American households in recent decades. It visits after a child has lost one of their teeth.

The child will place their lost tooth under their pillow before sleeping. But when the child wakes up, they will normally find money placed there – with the idea that the tooth fairy has visited during the night.

In most cases, parents tell their children that the tooth fairy only gives money for healthy or white teeth. This acts as an incentive for children to look after their teeth, so that they can get a monetary reward.

The amount of money given to a child from the tooth fairy can vary from family to family, and from year-to-year.

Results of the 2024 Tooth Fairy Poll®

Delta Dental have released their findings from the 2024 Tooth Fairy Poll®. This marks the most recent edition of the poll, with Delta Dental having ran the poll since 1998 [1].

The Tooth Fairy Poll® took place between the 3rd and 17th January 2024. 1,000 parents of children aged 6-12 took part in the survey, and answered a series of questions relating to their use of the tooth fairy [1].

The highlight is that the average value of a single lost tooth is $5.84. While this may sound a lot, it actually marks a 6% decrease in value from 2023, when the average was $6.23 [1].

Despite this year’s decline, over the last two decades, the amount spent has risen enormously. For example, in 2005, the average price per tooth was under $2 [1]. Therefore, the price has almost trebled in this time.

With American families gripped by a cost of living crisis and high inflation levels, it is believed that this may have played a role in the decline in value. This marks the first time in five years that the value of a tooth has fallen year-on-year [1].

The loss of a first tooth continues to be a big event, with this typically receiving a larger pay-out. However, even the average payment for this milestone event has fallen. The value has dropped from $7.29 in 2023 to $7.09 in 2024 [1].

Delta Dental provided some global tooth rates too, showing that the $5.84 average per tooth equals $7.89 in Canadian dollars, £4.62 in Great British pound sterling, and ¥877 in Japanese yen – providing information for those from different nations [2].

How does each American region compare?

Given the sheer size of the United States, it is unsurprising that expenditure ranges from region to region. As part of the poll, Delta Dental calculated an average spend for each region [1].

It turned out that the western region of the United States provided the highest average amount for a lost tooth with $8.54 [1]! This marked a 37% increase since 2023.

Meanwhile, the Northeast region’s average was $6.87. Moreover, this was a 12% increase since 2023 [1].

This was just ahead of the southern region, whose average spend per tooth was $5.51. As a result, the southern region has fallen from the most generous in 2023 to the third-most generous [1].

The Midwest region offered an average spend of $3.63. This meant that overall, the Midwest region had the smallest spend per tooth [1].


Delta Dental provide insurance for more than 89 million Americans. Gabriella Ferroni works for Delta Dental as a Senior Director in Strategic Communications. She mentioned that it wasn’t “a surprise” to see that the tooth fairy had “tightened her purse strings” in light of the recent rise in inflation [1].

However, Ferroni confirmed that the tooth fairy continues to be “a fun conversation starter to encourage good oral hygiene habits at an early age” [1]. Therefore, this underlines how important the tooth fairy can be for children.

Interestingly, the Tooth Fairy Poll® typically mirrors the overall direction of the economy – confirming that inflation has seemingly played a role in spending.

Overall, it is clear that the tooth fairy has helped many children, and that parents should certainly implement its use. For children, it can incentivize looking after their oral health – aiding their long-term dental health.

Thinking points…

1) It is crucial to remember that it isn’t just children that need to look after their oral health! For adults, eating healthily, brushing and flossing regularly and having strong oral hygiene are all very important! Another thing to remember is to attend regular dental check-ups. Check-ups provide a dentist with a chance to take a look at your oral health, provide advice, and identify any issues. We recommend booking an appointment now!

2) As shown above, the tooth fairy has a very positive impact on children. It clearly incentivizes them to have strong oral health! Therefore, if you are a parent, you should consider utilizing the tooth fairy wherever possible. Reminding your children of the tooth fairy regularly can help them to get into strong habits with their oral health, which can boost their overall health in the long run. Remember to regularly talk to your children about this!

What we offer at Taradale Dental

Taradale Dental is a Calgary dental clinic that provide its patients with a range of treatment options and advice, with the aim of improving oral health and boosting overall wellbeing!

We advise our patients to attend our Calgary-based dental clinic twice a year for a dental check-up. If any problems are detected, we have many treatments available. For instance, these include cavity fillings and root canals. To try and prevent problems, it is important to brush your teeth at least twice a day and floss regularly.

Here at Taradale Dental, we also have some cosmetic treatments available! These include dental implants, tooth whitening and Invisalign™! Our patients find that these treatments have a positive impact on their appearance, confidence and self-esteem.

In addition, the fees of our services at our Calgary dental clinic Taradale Dental are set in line with the Alberta Dental Fee Guide.

We would love you to visit our Taradale Dental clinic in Calgary! You can find out more about us by visiting our website


[1] Delta Dental Plans Association. (2024). Tooth Fairy giving drops for first time in 5 years, according to Delta Dental poll. Available: Last accessed: 29th February 2024.

[2] Delta Dental. (2024). Original Tooth Fairy Poll®. Available: Last accessed: 29th February 2024.