Use it or Lose it [5 Dental Expenses You Can Fund with FSA]

Posted Nov 2020

By Delta Dental of Arkansas

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It’s almost the end of the year—do you know how much FSA money you have left? It’s time to check your Flexible Spending Account and spend most or all of your balance by Dec. 31 so you don’t lose it.

Below is a list of eligible expenses to benefit your mouth and your smile, but first:

Quick Review: What’s an FSA?

Flexible spending accounts, also known as FSAs, are benefit plans offered by some employers to their workforce. The benefit allows participants to channel a portion of their pre-taxed income into an account that they can use to pay for qualified medical expenses and childcare costs.

If you’re one of the estimated 14 million families across the U.S. that use an FSA account, then you may need to use the funds before a certain date. Depending on what your employer selected for an FSA limit, you generally must use the money in an FSA within the plan year.

Some plans allow you to roll over a portion of the balance into the next calendar year, so check yours.

Your FSA is not insurance, but it is a support system that can help you pay for out-of-pocket health care costs.


5 types of dental expenses eligible for FSA money:

  1. Prescription Drugs, Medical and Dental Devices and OTC Items

    You can use your FSA to cover costs for prescription drugs, certain medical and dental devices, and many over-the-counter items you can buy at your local drug store. This includes cold sore remedies, SPF lip balm, Aspirin and other pain relievers (great if you’re suffering from a toothache!).

  2. Dental Treatments

    While you can’t use FSA money for teeth whitening, you can use it on certain treatments and services from your dental hygienist or dentist not covered by your dental insurance.

  3. Coinsurance, copays and deductibles

    Certain types of costs incurred with dental visits or treatments, such as coinsurance, copays, and deductibles, are qualified expenses you may pay with your FSA dollars.

  4. Crowns, Caps and Dentures

    Nearly 70% of adults between ages 25 to 44 have lost at least 1 permanent tooth to an accident, gum disease, a failed root canal or tooth decay. If you have to pay for a crown, cap or even dentures, you may use FSA monies to pay for these costs above what your dental insurance covers.

  5. Orthodontia
  6. You can use your FSA dollars to cover the costs of orthodontia services for yourself or a dependent if they are deemed necessary and not for cosmetic purposes.

    To learn more about your specific FSAs and what dental services are covered, check with your HR or Employee Benefits Manager.

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