Depending on who you ask, summer vacation may feel like it has just started (your kids) or thankfully coming to an end (parents)! The month of August is a busy one for parents as they jump into back-to-school shopping. But as important as school supplies and new clothes are, planning ahead for your child's wellness is just as important!
Your flexible spending account (FSA) can provide a source of financial relief for the must-have items your kids need to stay healthy as they head back into the classroom. Don't know where to start? Here are a few FSA-eligible items to keep in mind.
Bumps, scratches and scrapes are par for the course if you have a child in elementary school. Time spent in gym class, in the art room or on the playground can result in little mishaps, so keep some bandages handy to quickly take care of minor injuries. Bandages are eligible, over-the-counter products that do not require a prescription for FSA reimbursement.
Cover up those cuts and scrapes with all different types of FSA-eligible bandages for the entire family.
While most people associate allergy season with the early spring, the fall can present its own unique challenges if your child has a ragweed allergy. According to the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, ragweed season begins in August and will hit its peak in September when your child is in the thick of the new school year. Prepare beforehand with FSA-eligible cold & allergy products to keep your son or daughter's symptoms at bay.
Back-to-school can mean back-to-allergies. From allergy tablets to nasal spray to throat lozenges, your FSA keeps you covered.
Wax for Braces
If your child will be getting braces put on in the next several months, getting adjusted to these orthodontic devices can be a struggle. Wax is used in the months after braces are installed to prevent the brackets from causing abrasions on the inside of the mouth. Make sure your child has enough to hit the ground running during the school year with your FSA!
Braces can be uncomfortable, but braces wax is here to help. Relieve irritation caused by braces with braces wax.
Sick days will happen, and one of the best ways to monitor your child's physical health during an illness is with a thermometer. These devices are available in a variety of styles to suit your child's age, such as those that read temperature through the ear, forehead or mouth. Best of all, using your FSA funds will help you save on the cost of this must-have item for parents.
Get easy, quick temperature readings with professional accuracy with a wide variety of thermometers.
Light Therapy Acne System
If you have kids who are making the transition from elementary school to high school, acne is a major issue in their teen years. Instead of harsh astringents and topical treatments, light therapy may be a great alternative! A light therapy system utilizes blue light treatments to destroy bacteria on the skin that can contribute to acne to freshen and clean skin. It can even treat multiple areas of the body in under 10 minutes!
Use the power of light therapy to fight pesky breakouts by killing bacteria with light therapy acne masks.
For many FSA users, 2016 isn't over quite yet! The period between January 1 and March 15 is the FSA grace period (for FSA plans that ended on December 31, 2016), the last chance for millions of FSA holders to spend down the remainder of their 2016 funds before they are forfeited.
Companies have the option of choosing the 2.5 month grace period or the $500 rollover when setting up FSA plans for employees, so if your plan features the grace period, there is still time to spend down the remainder of your 2016 funds before the deadline! Whether you have $600 or $60 left in your account, FSAstore.com can help you spend down your remaining 2016 funds on the eligible products you and your family use the most. Here are a few ideas to keep in mind before March 15 arrives!
- Medical/Dental/Vision Care
First and foremost, your FSA is one of the easiest ways to save on medical spending, so whether you've been putting off a physical exam, a dental cleaning or even thinking about LASIK surgery, these are all qualifying medical expenses that can be covered with FSA funds. Before your 2016 plan year comes to a close, use your remaining funds to lay a healthy foundation for 2017!
- First Aid Kits
You may have a first aid kit at home, but what about your car, boat or workplace? Accidents happen when you least expect them, so be prepared for the worst wherever you're heading with FSA eligible first aid supplies.
- Mineral Sunscreen
The sun's rays are dangerous for your skin during any season, so if you'll be spending an extended amount of time outdoors in the coming months, make sure your skin is protected with mineral sunscreen! These products do not absorb into the skin, offer broad spectrum protection against UVA/UVB rays and are ready to protect from the sun as soon as they're applied.
- Sunscreen Lip Balm with SPF 15+
Don't let your lips suffer from a lack of sun protection year-round. Sun care lip balms that contain a sun protection factor of 15 or above are FSA eligible! Apply it before heading outdoors to safeguard your lips from the elements.
Check Out: Coppertone Sport Sunscreen Lip Balm SPF 50
Bandages are staples of the modern household that can handle cuts, scratches and bruises large and small. They can also run out fast over the course of the year, so this is the perfect opportunity to plan ahead.
- Neck Supports
Orthopedic neck supports are considered FSA eligible expenses, so if you're traveling in the future or simply need some pain relief when you're lounging around the house, these neck pillows can make a huge difference!
Check Out: IMAK HappiNeck Orthopedic Neck Support
- Contact Lens Accessories
In addition to contact lenses being FSA eligible, products like lens solution, carrying cases and other accessories are eligible for reimbursement as well.
- Eyeglass Accessories
On the opposite end of the spectrum, eyeglass wearers have plenty of care considerations of their own when maintaining their eyewear. Cleaning clothes, eyeglass repair kits and other accessories are FSA eligible, so use your benefit to ensure they're in great shape year-round.
Has your family's thermometer seen better days? These devices have evolved by leaps and bounds in recent years to make taking a temperature easier than ever. Oral, in-ear, forehead and other designs are all eligible with an FSA!
Check Out: Braun Forehead Thermometer
- Blood Pressure Monitor
If you or a loved one has a history of hypertension or a family history of heart disease, blood pressure monitoring is a smart choice for future health decisions. Smartphone-enabled blood pressure monitors make it easier than ever to track numbers and share them with healthcare professionals to better realize your long-term health goals.
Check Out: Qardio Arm Wireless Blood Pressure Monitor
When you shop with an FSA, you might be surprised to find hi-tech health items. Let's explore what those are at FSAstore.com.
When you shop at FSAstore.com, it quickly becomes clear that you can buy a lot of products with Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs). FSAs can offer everything from band-aids to contact lenses to breast pumps and blood pressure monitors. But, did you know that you can also shop for items that connect to your smartphone and can help you keep track of health?
That's exactly where the Hi-Tech category comes in at FSAstore.com! Let's explore some of the most popular products that you can get with your FSA from that category!
Blood Pressure Monitors
It may not be something we think about much, but it's suggested that people get blood pressure checkups every two years (or more often), depending on what your doctor recommends. That's at least what WebMD recommends in an article related to monitoring blood pressure.
"If your blood pressure is borderline high -- systolic blood pressure between 120 and 139 or diastolic blood pressure of 80 to 89 -- check it at least every year or more often as your doctor suggests. Depending on whether or not you have other medical issues, this number might be considered too high," WebMD said. Adding, "If your blood pressure is 140/90 or higher, talk with your doctor as this is high blood pressure and requires a doctor's attention."
The article also explains that you can easily measure blood pressure at home, as well. This is particularly important if you have high blood pressure. Though, WebMD cautions, "Before you take your blood pressure, it's recommended to avoid caffeine, cigarettes, and exercise for at least 30 minutes prior to the test.
You can use different types of blood pressure monitors, but since we're focusing on Hi-Tech Health today, let's discuss two popular ones that also connect to your smartphone. The next time you visit your doctor, you can easily share your readings!
1) The Withings Wireless Blood Pressure Monitor connects with a simple cuff, and can easily and automatically connect to the Health Mate app where you can store all readings. You'll be able to read your stats anytime whether it's on an iPhone, an Android or an iPod touch, and they are also stores on an online dashboard. Since the data is stored in the app, you can easily share it with your doctor at any time.
Shop for the Withings Wireless Blood Pressure Monitor with your FSA
2) The Qardio Arm Wireless Blood Pressure Monitor connects to iPhone and Android to provide accurate, clinically validated data that's also FDA approved for use by medical professionals. This monitor can detect irregular heart beat and seamlessly connects to your smartphone or tablet with a simple setup (all you do is turn on the device, launch the app on your smartphone or tablet and press Start). You can carry it with you no matter where you go, and it also comes with the free Qardio iOS app where you can share the data with your doctor or family members.
Shop for the Qardio Arm Wireless Blood Pressure Monitor at FSAstore.com
In addition to monitoring vitals such as blood pressure, thermometers ofcourse come in handy when you or a loved one are dealing with a fever. According to WebMD, "Body temperature is only one way of monitoring your health. Besides temperature, other basic measurements to monitor your health include your pulse, breathing rate (respiration), and blood pressure. These basic measurements are called your vital signs."
Here are a few popular thermometers that you can buy with your Flexible Spending, whether it's to monitor your own fever, that of a family or even of your baby.
1) The KINSASmartphone Thermometer gives you a 10-second and accurate reading of your temperature and even lets you track each member of your family. The thermometer connects to your smartphone (iOS and Android)through a free app that lets you share with family members and your doctor. It comes with a fun animated screen for kids, and a flexible design for comfort. You can also download the data to your mobile device and keep tracking fevers.
Shop for KINSA Smartphone Thermometer at FSAstore.com
2) The Vicks SmartTemp Wireless Smartphone Thermometer also makes it easy to monitor and get temperature readings per family member in 8 seconds (individual profiles will store each family member's temperatures), and you can set up reminders to check the last reading. You can connect the thermometer through the Vicks app to wirelessly keep track of the readings on your smartphone. A special Symptom Tracker monitors symptoms as they occur and the Fever InSight feature displays the temperature rreadout in green, yellow or red. The device is compatible with most iOS and Android devices.
Shop for the Vicks SmartTemp Wireless Smartphone Thermometer at FSAstore.com
The TempTraq Baby Bluetooth Thermometer offers a convenient, non-invasive way to monitor baby's body temperature through a soft, comfortable single-use, 24-hour patch. The patch is placed under your baby's arm and will transmit your baby's temperature using Bluetooth technology to compatible devices. As a parent, you'll be able to track your child's temperature from another room (up to 40 feet away) for 24 hours with alerts in case of a higher temperature. You'll be able to email the data to a doctor or family members, as well.
Shop for the TempTraq Baby Bluetooth Thermometer at FSAstore.com
Other Popular Products
As you're browsing the Hi-Tech Health category, you'll be sure to find other interesting products that are covered by an FSA.
1) One of these is the AccuRelief Ultimate Foot Circulator. This is an electrical stimulator that can provide relief to stiff muscles, reduces swollen feet and more. The technology works by placing electrode pads on your body or through the foot pads. You can easily use a remote control to control the electrical stimulation with 15 preset programs to alleviate different types of pain and increase circulation in your swollen feet or ankles.
Shop for the Ultimate Foot Circulator at FSAstore.com
2) The Quell Wearable Pain Relief Starter Kit provides 100%, drug-free relief from chronic pain through lightweight, doctor-recommended technology. This device is specifically designed for those who deal with sciatica, fibromyalgia, arthritis pain, and other types of pain. Just connect your Quell through Bluetooth and a smartphone app to easily monitor your pain therapy.
Shop for Quell Wearable Pain Relief with your FSA at FSAstore.com
3) The Eustachi Ear Unclogger works naturally to unclog your stuffy or congested ears, similar to how yawning and swallowing work. Eustachi is physician-recommended, and is also perfect for swimming, diving, flying and during cold and allergy season. It's great for kids and adults alike.
Shop for Eustachi Ear Unclogger at FSAstore.com
Looking for additional products? Browse the Hi-Tech category and learn about other products available with your FSA!