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Tooth traditions around the world

Tooth traditions around the world
Tooth traditions around the world

To celebrate the UEFA EURO 2020 football games, we thought we would share some interesting tooth traditions from around the world. From tooth fairies to helpful rodents, you’ll be surprised at how different the tradition varies country to country.


England flag

Of course, in England we leave our teeth under the pillow at night for the Tooth Fairy to collect. The Tooth Fairy arrived whilst children are asleep and exchange it for cash. The going rate for a tooth under the pillow now is approximately £5! (Let’s hope they don’t lose two in one go!)Early norse and European traditions suggest that when a child lost a baby tooth, it was buried to spare the child from hardships in the next life. Vikings used children’s teeth and other items from their children to bring them good luck in battle.


French flag

Instead of ‘The Tooth Fairy’, the French offer their teeth to their very own mouse: ‘La Bonne Petit Souris’. The tiny mouse is said to replace the teeth left under pillows with sweets or cash. Maybe sweets aren’t such a great idea unless you want early tooth decay or more missing teeth!The same can be said for countries such as Mexico, Columbia, Chile and Venezuela.

South Africa

South African flag

In South Africa, they do not use pillows as a place to pop their tooth at night. Instead, their baby teeth go into slippers.


Japanese flag

In Japan, children throw their teeth either in the air or on the ground. This depends on which tooth has fallen out. If they are bottom teeth, they are thrown into the air. If they are top teeth they are thrown to the ground. It is said to be best to throw the teeth in the same direction they grow in. The straighter the throw, the straighter the new teeth are supposed to grow back.



Similarly, in China, children take their tooth outside and throw it up in the air. The same is said that the straighter they throw it, the stronger and straight their new teeth with grown.


Flag spain

In Spain, a famous mouse called Perez collects children’s teeth. Instead of money, Perez comes to collect the teeth and replaces it with a gift for the child to find in the morning. Many children also pop their teeth in a glass of water before bed. This is where Perez shows up to collect the tooth. He will drink up the water and leave a gift in the empty glass instead. Its thirsty work being Perez!


Flag mongolia

Did you know, in Mongolia tradition is very different to Europe. Many people put the tooth into some fat and feed it to a dog. (Don’t try this at home). It is said this is done because they want the grown-up tooth to be as strong as the dogs’ teeth itself. If there is no dog, Mongolians bury the tooth by a tree, so that the new tooth grows strong roots.


Flag greece

In Greece, when children lose their teeth is customary for them to make a wish for strong adult teeth. When they make their wish, they throw their lost tooth onto the roof, which is said to bring good luck.

Missing teeth causing problems?

Until you lose a tooth, you may not have noticed how much it can play a part in our day to day lives. We understand the impact it can have on your life and will get your confidence back and restore your smile. The team at Bow Lane Dental can help. You can find out more about your options here.Alternatively, you can call our friendly receptionist team on 020 7236 3600. You can also email them at check-ups are FREE for all children under 16 years old at Bow Lane Dental Group. As long as one parent is an active patient. Please call us to hear more about free dental care for children of our patients.We hope you all enjoy the football matches! #EURO2020

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