FSAs, IRAs, COBRA, HSAs, PTO. When it comes to employee benefits, there are so many acronyms it’s hard to keep track of them all. And since many contributions are automatically deducted, it’s easy to forget what you’ve been paying into. But you will definitely want to take note if you set up an FSA, especially as the year draws to a close.
As a quick refresher, FSAs (shorthand for Flexible Spending Accounts) allow you to set aside up to $2,650 for deductibles, copays, some prescription drugs and other assorted healthcare costs. And the best part? You’re not taxed on that money.
Be careful not to confuse your FSA with an HSA (health savings account). The two differ in a few important ways. You are only eligible to open an HSA if you have a high deductible health plan, whereas FSAs are open to anyone. Health savings accounts also have a higher contribution cap (up to $3,450). Additionally, they allow you to change the amount you’re contributing throughout the year. And you can roll over any unused balances into the next year.
Conversely, contribution amounts to your FSA can only be adjusted at open enrollment or with a change in employment or family status. Perhaps most critically, FSAs operate on a system of “use it or lose it.” Any unused funds in your account will be forfeited at the start of the new year.
Don’t panic if you still have money sitting in your FSA and no doctors appointments on the horizon. The FSA store has plenty of cool, useful gizmos you’ll want to purchase for your home and your health.
Here’s some of the top tech you can buy with your account:
Slap on the Reliefband 2.0 and combat nausea, retching and vomiting. Indeed, this sleek device offers 10 levels of therapy intensity and can last a whopping 17 hours on a fully charged battery. It’s also drug-free, easy to use, and fast acting.
Take control of your family’s health with the CliniCloud Connected Medical Kit. Armed with both a stethoscope and thermometer, the CliniCloud lets you easily conduct a checkup and gather vital information on demand. It also has a companion app which allows you to store your readings on a phone or cloud server. You can then use the app to spot changes or trends. Best of all, it can connect with a physician who will review your results with you.
The Oska Pulse Electromagnetic Massage Unit delivers relief from both chronic and acute pain. It works by mimicking the natural electric signals the body produces to promote recovery. The Oska is ergonomically designed and fits anywhere; you can use it on your knee, back, joints and more. It’s a great drug-free alternative to pain management.
Using clinically-proven pulse oximetry, the Owlet Smart Sock gently tracks your baby’s heart rate, oxygen levels, and sleep. It then sends this info to a base station (via Bluetooth) and notifies you when levels dip above or below pre-set ranges. You can also log into the Owlet app for real-time wellness data and notifications. All in all, the Smart Sock provides so much peace of mind you’ll end up sleeping like a baby yourself.
Get the clear skin you crave with the reVive Acne Light Therapy System. How does it work? Well, this portable device uses powerful blue-light therapy to target and destroy bacteria residing deep within the skin. This helps to reduce flareups and delivers a clearer, smoother complexion. And it does all all this without the unwanted side effects that occur with harsher drugs or chemicals. Sign us up!
Of course, the FSA store isn’t all about high tech gadgets. You can also purchase items for your travel needs. Here’s a small taste of what you can find:
Make your travel experience a little more comfortable with the IMAK HappiNeck Orthopedic Neck Support. This lush pillow conforms to the contour of your neck and shoulders, offering complete support. It’s also compact and lightweight so it easily squeezes into any suitcase. And, most importantly, the HappiNeck’s plush terry cover will leave you looking super stylish!
Planning on spending your upcoming vacation as an intrepid explorer, trekking through rain forests or trudging through frozen tundras? Then you’ll certainly want to purchase a Johnson and Johnson Safe Travels Kit. This bad boy is stocked with all the first aid essentials you might need — cleansing wipes, antibiotic ointment, adhesive bandages, Tylenol, and more.
The 3-Day Weekender Pill Box makes traveling with vitamins and meds a breeze. You can easily organize all of your pills into the detachable compartments. And there’s no need to worry if your bag get jostled; the snap-on lids form a tight seal to keep everything secure.
Like to stay local? Well you can also use your FSA to stock up on everyday items such as:
Don’t let the money in your flexible spending account go to waste. Shop and save today!