If you head out on Disney vacations with school-age children often enough, eventually the inevitable will happen. Someone’s going to lose a tooth. In my family, this has happened twice. My oldest daughter, Charlie, wiggled out a floppy tooth during a stage show on the Disney Wonder. A few years later, her younger sister Josie bit into a frozen Mickey bar at Disney’s California Adventure, looked down and found her tooth embedded in the chocolate and the vanilla ice cream tinged with blood. (Needless to say, we got her a new bar once the bleeding subsided.)
Of course when this kiddie rite of passage happens, you can handle it as you would at home; just pop a quarter/dollar/fiver/sawbuck under the pillow and move along. But perhaps this is an opportunity for some Disney magic to spice up your routine.
In our case, Charlie was worried that the Tooth Fairy wouldn’t find her. After many reassurances that fairies have special access to the GPS coordinates of every ship at sea, we were able to settle her down for the night. At this point my husband dashed down to the gift shop and purchased a Tinker Bell themed Disney Cruise pin, which we slipped, along with the requisite dollar, under her pillow. With the loot, Charlie also found a note “from the Tooth Fairy” explaining that special fairy legislation gave Tink dominion over all Disney venues, thus the inclusion of the pin.
Since the note became part of family lore, when Josie lost the tooth at Disneyland, we also had to get her a Tinker Bell gift for under her pillow. Luckily there is no shortage to Tink merchandise in the parks, so we were able to score a special fairy pin to commemorate her tooth loss as well.
I must admit that I thought we were pretty clever with our special Disney spin on tooth loss until I figured out that countless other families have celebrated in similar ways. Here’s a run down of Disney tooth loss tips I’ve encountered:
- Use Disney Dollars in place of real dollars under the pillow.
- Sprinkle the bed/pillow with Mickey-shaped confetti
- Put a Disney pressed penny or quarter under the pillow – maybe one with Tink, if you can find it
- Visit the Tinker Bell meet and greet at WDW and ask Tink herself about tooth protocol – apparently she’s very supportive during these discussions
- Use a Sacagawea gold dollar, but call it a Pocahantas dollar
- Leave a small plush fairy under the pillow
- Have the Tooth Fairy or Tink leave a note on a pretty Disney postcard
- Put a Disney-themed toothbrush under the pillow (often found for sale in the parks)
- For a girl, buy a small fairy-themed jewelry box in which to deposit the cash
As with most things Disney, special treatment is not guaranteed, but it never hurts to speak up when something special happens on your vacation. Tell the front desk of your hotel, your waitress, the nice lady at the gift shop, and anyone else who will listen, that your child has lost a tooth. Occasionally this will result in some sort of perk like a free ice cream (always makes me feel better) or having a free card or balloon delivered to your room.
Also, it never hurts to be prepared for special circumstances. If your child has a loose tooth just prior to your trip, you may want to plot out your strategy or acquire a special treat in advance “just in case.”
On a related note, if somehow during the confusion of vacation, the tooth fairy does end up missing you on her appointed rounds, you can always blame the circumstance of being away from home – and then follow up with a REALLY good surprise later.
Has your child lost a tooth during your Disney vacation? How did you handle this? Anything you did right, or wish you had done differently at the time? Let us know in the comments below.