A person looking into abstract mirrors with reflections of a person on a phone and a person holding a debit card.

Use your HSA for a stress reduction day

Your HSA is there for you for big or small medical expenses, retirement, an unexpected emergency, and even a day of rest and relaxation.

People are stressed right now, for good reason. From people losing their income to those suddenly stuck at home trying to work and homeschool their kids. It’s a perfect storm of stress. In fact, a recent Kaiser Family Foundation Poll indicated that half of the adult working population has experienced a negative impact on mental health as a result of COVID-19.

A little bit of good news? You can use your HSA for a stress reduction day. Here’s how.

Take (Self) Care

Imagine a day filled with self-care. You wake up from a good night’s sleep, have a healthy breakfast, and head to your local massage therapist.  The healing hands of your therapist can help remove all that tension you’ve been dealing with sitting at home trying to work. 

Not into massage therapy? No problem. Take a therapeutic visit to your acupuncturist or get that sore back and neck adjusted by your chiropractor. In any case, alleviating physical pain can do wonders for your body, mind, and mood at large. Swipe your Starship card when you leave.

Then it’s a quick trip to the pharmacy to pick up some additional health products. Your massage therapist wanted you to get a heated blanket for the condition you have in your back from sitting all the time at a desk. Again, they’re eligible HSA expenses!!

After this, you head home for a virtual visit with your therapist so you can talk to someone about what’s going on in the world (and in your world). It’s critical for your mental health to stay connected. You settle down for the day with a good meal. That’s followed up by a hot shower or bath while you treat yourself to some aromatherapy products from the drugstore. Candles and a glass of wine? Well, those aren’t covered by your HSA, but…

Pro Tip: If you plan ahead for a required doctor’s visit out of town, you can also expense the cost of a hotel room (and the gas that got you there) for the night.

While it can’t be an overly fancy hotel, your night away could include a hot tub, sauna, a gym, and other simple amenities to enjoy. Many hotels offer additional spa services at discounted rates for hotel guests. Relaxing on a budget is definitely possible.

Remember to Keep Those Receipts…

Keep any receipts from the hotel bill and gas fill-ups (you will need to use another credit card for these) and submit this for reimbursement. You can attach receipts to any payment request using your phone’s camera and send it off before you even hit the road again. 

…and Follow the Rules

Remember that your HSA allows you to pay for eligible medical expenses that are prescribed by your doctor. It’s called a Letter of Medical Necessity (LMN). You’ll want to get that before you expense your massage or acupuncture, and any travel costs related to them. But, good news, chiropractor services don’t require an LMN.

Stress reduction services exist for lots of reasons, but one of the most important, especially right now, is to help restore you to a normal state of health and wellbeing.

If you’ve been diagnosed with depression or anxiety, being able to participate in well-being activities and have access to services and support are especially vital. You can always talk with your doctor (telehealth services are an eligible expense) about other ways to reduce your stress—and chances are good that what they recommend will be HSA-eligible.

So, go enjoy your personal stress reduction day and feel your worries slip away! Your HSA makes it easy.