by Grace Sloop
A letter from the Tooth Fairy can make the milestone of losing a tooth even more memorable for your child. It can also be a great opportunity for you to discuss good oral hygiene with your children.
Dare I say it, oral hygiene can even be fun. Okay fine, it’s certainly not the knee-slapping, rolling-on-the-floor-laughing kind of fun, nor the screaming, riding-a-roller-coaster kind of fun, but it can at least be enjoyable enough to do consistently everyday to have great-looking teeth for years to come. How? Well, it can work if you’ve got some things like flavored toothpaste and colorful kids’ toothbrushes on hand, though even these can get a bit bland after awhile.
This is where the Tooth Fairy can come in very handy. She not only promotes good oral hygiene, but she offers hard cash rewards for good behavior as well as teeth. What better motivator than cash? Heck, the Tooth Fairy could well become a Rock Star in your household, superseding even Santa Claus status.
So, how do you use the power of the Tooth Fairy to get your youngsters to brush their teeth? For starters, you could write your own letter from the Tooth Fairy thanking your children for their teeth and reminding them about brushing and flossing. Or, if you are like me and you don’t find oral hygiene particularly inspiring, you can find a wide variety of Tooth Fairy books, printables, crafts, and games online. Some of these books also offer advice on how to talk to your children about caring for their teeth.
But before the Tooth Fairy can even make an appearance (err, a silent, unseen one), your kids needs some teeth to put under their pillows. Yet children don’t always lose their teeth naturally, even when they are wiggly and on the verge. Sometimes, their teeth have to be pulled by a dentist. But don’t worry, your dentist has probably done it countless times before for other kids, so he or she can help you prepare your child for the experience. Some dentists will even provide a pre-printed letter from the Tooth Fairy afterward to save you some work.
On the other hand, as with many early-age parental personas, the downside of all this is with older kids. While younger children approach the Tooth Fairy with honesty and sincerity, the older ones sometimes start to see her as a cash cow. So if your child starts wanting you to be go-between to negotiate the price of a molar vs. a bicuspid…you’ve got some greed going on. Of course, you’ve still got the leverage, so use it.
The same goes if the Tooth Fairy reaches under an older brother’s or sister’s pillow and finds the dog’s tooth, the little brother’s tooth, last year’s tooth, or something that barely resembles a tooth at all. Tooth fraud! It’s obviously not the first time it’s happened, so here’s a very funny letter from the Tooth Fairy which let’s little Mark or Sarah know that she was not fooled by the shark tooth that they found on the beach last summer: http://monster-island.org/tinashumor/humor/tfairy.html
So you see, whether it’s to celebrate the natural loss of a tooth, to comfort a child who’s just had a tooth pulled, or even to gently rebuke an older child who has perpetrated tooth fraud, a letter from the Tooth Fairy is always special.