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5 Easy Ways To Spend FSA/HSA Dollars Before They Expire

5 Easy Ways To Spend FSA/HSA Dollars Before They Expire

As we approach the end of yet another year, it is time again for all of us to double-check the balance in our Health Savings Account or Flexible Spending Account. These special spending accounts are unique in that the money you put into them isn’t taxed, so you save a little bit each time you put money into the plan and use it.

While HSA/FSA accounts have a few differences, they are pretty similar in that some or all of their balance will likely not roll over at the end of the year. That’s why you want to make sure you use up as much of the funds before they expire on December 31.

Here Are Five Easy Ways To Spend Your FSA/HSA Money Before It Disappears

While it can be annoying to lose money at the end of the year, the good news is using up those stashed funds is relatively easy. A wide variety of necessary preventative care and medical items are covered under these plans, including most basic vision care.

So today, we will take a look at some of the top, easy ways to use up your remaining FSA/HSA balance before it expires.

1) Doctors And Specialist Visits

Many people may not realize FSA/HSA dollars can be used to cover any copayments for regular doctor or specialist visits, either for the account holder or for dependents through to age 26. This makes it our top use for using up those account funds.

Co-pays for a family can add up as an out-of-pocket expense, but you shouldn’t forgo regular preventive care or annual checkups because of it. So, use your FSA/HSA funds first off for medical expenses like doctors, dentists, and optometrist appointments.

2) Sunglasses And Readers

If you have a prescription for needed vision correction, your sunglasses or readers are likely covered as an FSA/HSA-eligible expense. Even though they aren’t your typical prescription eyeglasses or contact lenses, so long as they are a medical product that corrects your vision, they count.

Unfortunately, sunglasses that do not require a prescription are not often covered.  Reading glasses can fall under an eligible expense since they do provide corrective action. So, if you find yourself needing glasses when reading, stock up on a few pairs and help keep your eye strain minimized.

3) Lens Cleaning And Repair Items

Cleaning your eyeglasses or contact lenses is essential to maintain clear vision and eye health. Some common items you might need for cleaning your lenses that are often covered by FSA/HSA accounts include microfiber cleaning cloths, cleaning solutions, and contact lens cases.

Eyewear repair kits are eligible for reimbursement with an FSA or HSA to further help you ensure your prescriptive lenses can be well maintained and correct your vision accurately.

4) Eye Drops And Artificial Tears

Most over-the-counter eye drops and artificial tears are FSA/HSA eligible. These items can cover drops for uses such as:

  • Calming allergy symptoms
  • Rewetting drops for contact lenses
  • Reducing redness from pink eye or styes
  • General treatment for dry eyes

While most drops will be covered, whether you can use FSA funds for eye drops also depends on the specific eye drops and the medical condition they are intended to treat. It is always a good idea to consult with your HSA provider and familiarize yourself with the specific guidelines and regulations for your account. 

In some cases, a written prescription may be required to substantiate the expense. Ensure that the eye drops are prescribed by a qualified medical professional, such as an ophthalmologist or optometrist.

5) Vitamins And Supplements

If you take vitamins or nutritional supplements for your health, they may be covered under your HSA or FSA so long as you have a Letter of Medical Necessity (LMN) from your doctor. 

If your diet already provides the necessary vitamins and nutrients for your body, adding a supplement will not do anything to improve vision. Excessive intake of vitamins and essential nutrients can imbalance the body and lead to other severe health problems. When it comes to eye health, there are some recommended vitamins to help promote healthy vision, including:

  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin E and B
  • Zinc
  • Lutein and Zeaxanthin
  • Omega-3 Fatty Acids

If you think you might have a deficiency, speak to a doctor to verify and get recommendations on the best supplement for you.

Asheville Vision And Wellness

For Buncombe and surrounding counties in North Carolina, Asheville Vision and Wellness has the expertise, respect, and technology you can trust with your vision. If you have any concerns or questions regarding insurance, coverage options, or eye care costs, our knowledgeable staff can help answer your questions.

Since 1989, our staff has served the area using the latest science and medical treatments to keep your vision healthy. Our optometrists are certified in diagnosing, treating, and managing ocular disease with examinations customized just for your unique eye-care needs. We accept a wide variety of insurance plans and payment options.

If you have concerns about your eyesight or are overdue for an annual checkup, schedule an appointment online or call us at (828) 747-9260.