Many people these days opt for a Health Savings Account (HSA), allowing for pretax dollars to go toward health care spending. These accounts go by many names- cafeteria plans, health savings accounts or flexible spending accounts, to name a few. But most of these are ‘use them or lose them’ accounts where money not spent is lost. Your Optometrist‘s office is a great place to spend this money before the end of the year.

For a family in the 25% tax bracket, a $200 pair of glasses actually cost the equivalent of $150 by using pre-tax dollars, saving you  $50 that would have gone to Uncle Sam.

Here are a few ideas of ways to use your money on eye care and eye wear before the end of the year:

1. A backup pair of glasses. Whether you wear glasses or contact lenses, everyone could use a just-in-case pair. Our office has great styles available starting at $80 for the frame and lenses. If you’ve been putting off that spare pair, now is the time to jump on it.

2. Computer glasses. With increased time spent on computers, Blackberrys and iPhones, eye strain is steadily increasing. For many people, computer glasses are a  simple solution to increase comfort with digital devices.

3. Sunglasses. I have absolutely no problem touting UV-blocking sunglasses as a necessary medical expense. Your flex spending dollars can be spent at CVS for sunscreen, so why not for the eyes? Our office has plenty of sunglass options from the ultra-trendy RayBan Wayfarers to sporty Maui Jims.

4. Contact lenses. Manufacturers are always offering rebates through our office for quanitiy contact lens purchases, so now is the time to stock up on what you would buy anyway. And having more contacts available at home leads to better compliance. A great analogy is toothpaste, when the tube is new you probably squeeze it all over with no real concern for how much comes out. But by the end, you’re puting on as little as you can to conserve that last drop. It’s no wonder that people stretch their last pair of lenses for almost three times as long as the first pair in the box.

Plus, our office will take back any unopened and marked boxes for full credit, so if your prescription changes down the line, the exchange will allow you to update your vision without any additional money.

These ideas are just the tip of the iceberg of how our office can help you maximize your flex spending accounts before you lose this benefit for another year.

This information is brought to you by Clarin Eye Care Center. Please call or contact our office for more information.

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