The Tooth Fairy's Payouts Are Shrinking

Extra extra! Breaking news! Tooth Fairy profits are down from last year! Children now forced to perform tasks of cleaning and general helpfulness to earn back lost 24 cents per tooth! Leaking teeth no longer considered viable career option for elementary students! Kevin O'Brien, toothless wonder of third grade class, now asks, "What about me?"

OK, so Kevin O'Brien doesn't actually exist (my apologies to anyone out there who actually bears the name), but apparently the rest of it is true: According to Visa's annual Tooth Fairy earnings report, kids in 2015 aren't gettin quite as much per tooth as their 2014 counterparts did. Personally, I think the big news is the amount of time and effort the folks who run the survey put into non-existent beings — especially a B-List one like the Tooth Fairy — but maybe I'm just being a grump. After all, the Tooth Fairy survey is now in its sixth year, and Forbes has taken the time to calculate the Tooth Fairy's net worth ($3.9 billion, if you must know), so clearly people actually care about this stuff.

If $3.9 billion seems like a lot, by the way — well, it is. The Tooth Fairy ranks as one of the richest fictional characters out there, so... there's that. That's an actual fact that's been proven. I guess.

Anyway, this is the second year in a row that Tooth Fairy earnings have declined. $3.19 is apparently the average going rate for a chunk of useless enamel that would have fallen out regardless as to whether a mythical being provided prize money for the children in question. Exactly how we arrive at that rate, however, is kind of... interesting. 10 percent of households reported not paying children anything for their lost teeth, while five percent reported paying out $20 per tooth. Am I the only one weirded out by that ridiculous sum? Because seriously. $20 a tooth seems like way too much.

The rate per tooth also differs based on geographic regions. Northeast kiddos are the luckiest, averaging out with $3.56 per pearly white, while Southern babies get the short end of the stick with an average of $3.09.

So, uh, great job, guys. Now you have more gum exposed. That's awesome. And not at all gross.

Still, though: $20? Seriously?

Images: Ilike/Fotolia; Giphy