go back

Use FSA/HSA dollars For Allergies and Asthma

November 30, 2022

Use it or lose it

As another year comes to a close, most of us are scrambling to cram in much-needed doctors’ appointments before our deductibles reset with the new year. But it’s also important to use money lingering in your health savings account (HSA) or flexible spending account (FSA). FSAs have a use-it-or-lose-it structure, meaning any money left in the account goes back to your employer. Which you likely don’t want! Unfortunately, this is a common practice. In fact, those with an FSA let go of an estimated $7.2 billion between 2019 and 2020, according to Money.

That’s why we have a plan for you to help you get allergy and asthma medications, treatments, and products and services.

Save Money With Your FSA or HSA

Many Americans use either an HSA or FSA to save on taxes and help pay for specific prescription, medical, dental and vision expenses. The big difference in the two accounts comes down to how they’re managed:

  • The money you put into your HSA account is 100% yours, which allows contributions to roll over at the end of the year and even if you leave a job.
  • FSAs are tied to a person’s employer and a portion of the funds expire at the end of the year. So, if you have a large amount left over in your account, or changed jobs during the year, your hard-earned money could disappear if you don’t do something about it. 

Can You Use FSA/HSA for non-prescription Medication?

Yes, you can use HSA and FSA money to buy prescription and non-prescription allergy and Asthma medications, as well as other over the counter (OTC) remedies. This is a more recent development established in March 2020 as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (also known as the CARES Act).

Other Items you can use your FSA or HSA dollars on

Several over-the-counter allergy and asthma treatments and most prescriptions are FSA or HSA eligible. These treatments and products can include:

  • Allergy shots, serum and injections
  • Allergist office visit costs
  • Antihistamines (like Benadryl, Chlor-Trimeton, Zyrtec, Claritin, or Allegra) Neti pots and other nasal wash products
  • Topical steroid and Anti-itch cream
  • Nasal sprays and Nasal steroids 
  • Asthma inhalers (both controller and rescue inhalers)
  • Montelukast (Prescription Singulair) 
  • Nebulizer treatments
  • EpiPens 
Child using an asthma inhaler
Boy inhales asthma medicine through homemade spacer.

Can I Buy a Humidifier or Air Purifier With My FSA or HSA Card?

Air purifiers such as HEPA filters can be helpful for the bedroom and indoor living spaces for allergy sufferers. Consider this as an additional tool to fight allergies. It’s possible to buy a humidifier or air purifier with your HSA or FSA card, but you’ll need a letter of medical necessity, from your healthcare provider. This type of documentation justifies your need for the humidifier or air purifier.

Are humidifiers actually beneficial though? Certainly, humidifiers can benefit asthmatics! It comes down to having the proper humidity level. The humidity level in your house, like other things, must be regulated and should be between 30% and 50%. When humidity is less than 30%, the air is too dry (producing a host of issues), and when humidity is more than 50%, the air is too humid, allowing mold and mildew to thrive.

However, only if you have complete control over the interior humidity level. Humidifiers can help excessive dryness in dry climates. Humidifiers can be tricky and need proper maintenance and operation to avoid the possibility of contamination. Speak with an AllerVie Health provider to see if a humidifier is right for you.  

Medically Reviewed By: Robert McDermott, MD
Reviewed on: Nov. 30, 2022

Our team of writers, editors, and medical experts goes over each article carefully to make sure the information is correct and that only reliable sources are used.

We regularly check to see if the info in this article matches up with the latest scientific research and expert advice so that we can give you the most up-to-date information. See list of trusted resources here.

Be Proactive With Your Allergies

Stocking up on allergy medication and products services is a great idea — especially if you have money to lose on the line. But having a dedicated health care professional on your side to guide you through the highs and lows of navigating allergies is priceless for your health and well-being. AllerVie Health’s board-certified allergists and immunologists are committed to helping you reach — and keep — your best health and quality of life.

Make an Appointment