Sour economy takes bite out of Tooth Fairy

Survey: Average gift left by Tooth Fairy down 17% to $2.10

Published On: Feb 23 2012 10:35:18 AM EST   Updated On: Feb 23 2012 10:46:30 AM EST

The weakened economy has affected many segments of society, and a new survey suggests that it may have taken a bite out of the Tooth Fairy as well.

In the Original Tooth Fairy Poll conducted annually by Delta Dental, 1,355 parents across the country said the average amount left for a tooth is $2.10, down from $2.52 in 2010, according to the survey.

In a news release, the nonprofit organization said the 17 percent drop in value is one of the largest declines since it began conducting the pollĀ in 1998.

Chris Pyle, spokesman for the Delta Dental Plans Association, said "Like many Americans, the Tooth Fairy needed to tighten her belt in 2011, but she's hopeful for a recovery this year. More importantly, Delta Dental is encouraged that parents are still making visits to the dentist a priority for their children."

Pyle added that 90 percent of parents participating in the survey said their children visit the dentist every six months.