It's back-to-school time, and as you scramble to get your kids ready for the new academic year, there may be more to think about than just picking up school supplies.
This is because August is Children's Eye Health and Safety Month, sponsored by the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO). Each year, the organization aims to provides information to the public that can help protect and preserve your child's eye health.
Luckily, whether you have a standard flexible spending account (FSA) or a limited care flexible spending account (LCFSA), your benefits can cover a significant portion of vision care expenses that can help your child see clearly throughout the coming school year. Here are just a few of the AAO's suggestions of what you should cover as the calendar flips to September and school gets underway.
Before your kids get back in the classroom this fall, make an appointment with your optometrist to ensure your child's eyesight is healthy - and use your FSA to offset the costs.
Another good plan is to make sure your kids have up-to-date glasses and contact lenses that can stand up to the rigors of childhood. Your FSA covers reading glasses, prescription eyeglasses and prescription contact lenses.
If your child's eye wear is in need of an update, your FSA can cover the fresh new look they've been looking for. Visit our Optical Store to browse our selection of leading eye care brands.
Are all types of contacts covered?
If contacts are designed to correct vision problems, they're FSA-eligible. Though insurance companies might have their own policies regarding coverage of specific types or brands of lenses, they're usually reimbursable with your tax-free funds. Plus, unlike some insurance providers, which may not cover contact lenses in place of eyeglasses, if the contacts are prescribed to correct vision they are eligible, regardless of insurance plan coverage.
Vision correction accessories
Are you running low on contact lens solution? Has your child misplaced a carrying case? In addition to vision correction methods, your FSA covers a huge slate of products that can protect and prolong the lifespan of your kids' eyeglasses and contact lenses. Contact lens solution, eyeglass repair kits, cleaning cloths and much more are eligible for FSA reimbursement.
From FSA basics to the most specific account details, in our weekly Asked and Answered column, our team gets to the bottom of your most-pressing flex spending questions. It appears every Wednesday, exclusively on the FSAstore.com Learning Center. And for the latest info about your health and financial wellness, be sure to follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
August is National Eye Exam Month, and luckily people can use their FSA to cover the cost of annual eye exams and related eye care products.
Next month is National Eye Exam Month, and luckily people can use their FSA to cover the cost of annual eye exams. Even with healthy eyesight, it's important to get an annual checkup. If you've noticed you're getting headaches or your eyes feel strained or otherwise uncomfortable, now is a good moment to schedule an eye exam.
According to WebMD, "Staring at computer monitors, smartphones, and video game screens may result in strained, dry, and tired eyes." And, their experts mention the following tips:
"To prevent eye strain, adjust your computer monitor so that it's 2 feet in front of you. Use desk lighting to reduce glare. Take a break every hour. Spend a few minutes looking at something much farther away than the monitor."
They added, "Healthy adults younger than 40 usually have stable vision. To maintain your vision and overall eye health, wear sunglasses that have UV protection. Wear protective gear when playing sports or working with power tools, machinery, or chemicals -- both at work and at home."
Luckily, prescription sunglasses are FSA-eligible, so you can use your pre-tax dollars to shop for these.Keep in mind that certain conditions may also affect your eye health, including diabetes and high blood pressure. WebMD's experts caution that, "Diabetes is a leading cause of blindness in adults.
People with diabetes may develop retinopathy (shown, damage to blood vessels in the retina). High blood pressure can damage the eye's blood vessels and nerves. It can cause permanent vision loss. When you take care of your overall health by eating well and not smoking, your eyes (and the rest of your body) benefit."
Here are other ways to use your FSA for eye care: Your Flexible Spending Account (FSA) can cover additional types of eye care expenses,whether related to products including glasses, contact lenses or eyeglass accessories.Contact lens wearers can buy contact lens solution, contact lens cases and more. If you wear glasses, you can use your FSA to buy lens cleaning cloths, eyeglass repair kits, prescription eyeglasses, prescription sunglasses and much more.