Our Sherrill’s Ford Dentist Shares Tooth Fairy Traditions Around the World
A child losing his or her first baby tooth is a milestone that’s celebrated all around the world. From mice to leprechauns; from throwing to burying; and from candy to money, all cultures have different ways to help children celebrate the loss and ensure good fortune for the years to come. Here are just a few.
Tooth Leprechauns in Ireland
In Ireland, the Tooth fairy is a leprechaun, not a fairy, by the name of Anna Bogle. Legend tells that Anna Bogle was a mischievous young leprechaun girl who was playing happily in the forest one day until, to her dismay, one of her front teeth was knocked out! Poor Anna cried, believing herself to be ugly, and tried everything she could think of to replace it. One day, she had an idea to get a human child’s tooth to put in its place. Since leprechauns are not creatures who steal, Anna leaves a piece of “leprechaun gold”—either a metal or chocolate variety—behind for each tooth she takes.
Tooth Mice in Europe
In France, she’s called “la petite souris” or “the little mouse.” Spain and many Hispanic-speaking countries have a male mouse called “Ratoncito Pérez.” In Italy, the mouse is named Topolino. All of these little mice friends take teeth in the middle of the night and leave a coin behind. In some countries, like Argentina, the tooth mouse can only find the tooth if it’s placed in a glass of water. The mouse is said to drink the water, take the tooth, and leave a gift behind in the empty glass.
Tooth on the Roof
In many countries, like Greece, China, Singapore, and Vietnam, children throw their teeth onto the roof. In some places, it’s believed that if the tooth lands straight, the new tooth will grow in straight, but if it lands crooked, the new tooth will grow in crooked. In other places, an lower tooth is thrown onto the roof to encourage its replacement to grow upwards, and a lower tooth is tossed in the cellar to encourage its replacement to grow downwards. In Moldavia and Romania, “Crow, crow, take this milk tooth and bring me a steel one!” Cherokee Indian children run around the house with the tooth and throw it on the roof while saying, “Beaver, put a new tooth in my jaw!” four times.
Some cultures are more secretive about a lost tooth, and the reward for the it is simply a healthy new adult tooth. In Ukraine, children place the lost tooth inside a tissue and place it in a dark corner of the house, whispering, “Take my old tooth and give me a new one.” The tooth is left in the corner until a new one grows in. In Austria, young children are often encouraged to bury the tooth somewhere secret, so that a witch does not find it and use it to curse the child.
We Hope You Enjoyed Learning About These Toothy Traditions!
Whether his lost tooth is nabbed by a tooth fairy, a mouse, or a witch, there’s no doubt that this is a special time in your child’s life. We hope that you have enjoyed reading about these fun traditions, and may even be inspired to create a new one of your own! If you are looking for a children’s dentist in Sherrill’s Ford, stop by our pediatric dentist office today! To request an appointment, click here.