Great Uses For FSA/HSA

Recently, finding a convenient time to go in for your family’s eye exams may have been challenging. It’s possible it even fell off your radar entirely. The good news is, if you live in the United States and have contributed toward a Flexible Spending Account (FSA) or Health Savings Account (HSA), you can use that money on an eye exam or new glasses. As the end of the year approaches though, time may be running out to use those benefits. Once that happens, any unused money may be gone. So, how can you get more bang for your buck? Here are some ideas.

What’s the difference between an FSA and an HSA?

First, there are some fundamental differences between these two cost-saving health care funds that you should know about. While both are methods of putting money into a pretax account, they each offer various advantages.

An FSA is established and owned by your employer. It’s worth noting that this means if you quit your job, you forfeit any remaining FSA dollars. An HSA is owned by the individual. To qualify for an HSA, you cannot be claimed as a dependent on anybody else’s tax returns. You must also have a high-deductible health plan and not be enrolled in Medicare.

eye exam

Schedule your eye exam

An eye exam is perhaps the most proactive thing you can do toward maintaining your eye health. Even if you think you don’t need an appointment or checkup, sometimes vision issues can linger undetected for months, even years, and early detection can make for more effective solutions. If you don’t have vision benefits, don’t fret! You can use those FSA/HSA dollars to make sure your most valuable assets (your eyes!) are healthy.

Find out if you have unspent FSA/HSA dollars

fsa/hsa

Even if you’ve used your vision benefits on an eye exam, you might still have money remaining in your FSA/HSA. In addition to eye exams, you can use that money to buy the perfect pair of glasses, a backup pair of glasses, or Rx sunglasses! Of course, you’ll want to make sure you spend that money before it goes to waste. Check in on your funds – you might be surprised to find how valuable remaining FSA/HSA dollars can be.

Spend your remaining FSA/HSA on an extra pair of eyewear

woman shopping

It’s always smart to have an extra pair of eyeglasses or prescription sunglasses. Using leftover FSA/HSA dollars on a backup pair will put your mind at ease if you misplace your current eyewear. It’s also a chance to try out or to upgrade contact lenses or colored lenses. Blue light filtering lenses are another great option. Clear Blue lenses filter out blue light emitted from everyday electronic devices like cell phones, tablets, and computers. Increased exposure to blue light may cause a number of harmful side effects such as headaches, blurred vision, and even long-term vision loss. If you’ve ever wanted to try Clear Blue lenses, this could be the perfect time for you.

Vitamins and more

eye vitamins

While not losing sight of how important lenses and frames are, your flexible spending can go toward other aspects of your eye care, like vitamins. Which is great because it really can’t be stressed enough how important vitamins are for overall eye wellness. Taking vitamins A, E, and C can provide eye-protecting benefits to your healthy dietary routines. Another option to consider is eye drops. If you struggle with dry eyes, having reliable drops will be a great addition to any medicine cabinet.

Sources:
1. http://www.allaboutvision.com/vision-insurance/glossary.htm
2. http://www.allaboutvision.com/vision-insurance/how-to-use.htm
3. https://www.forbes.com/advisor/taxes/healthcare-fsa-vs-hsa/

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