LASIK eye surgery is a popular treatment that is used to treat various types of eye problems, including astigmatism, nearsightedness and farsightedness. A lot of people opt for this procedure because it is painless and only takes a few minutes per eye to complete. Right after treatment, your eyesight is improved and, in some cases, the issue is eradicated, allowing you to forgo your eyeglasses or contact lenses. The results are noticeable within 24 hours.
How LASIK Works
During LASIK eye surgery, the cornea of your eye is reshaped to allow light to be directed to the correct area of the retina, so that you can see more clearly. You’ll have to consult with a LASIK surgeon to determine if this procedure is right for your eye condition.
You will need a pre-operative exam, which will consist of a dilated eye exam. This will allow the surgeon to determine the shape and thickness of your cornea and whether there are any refractive errors. Your pupil size will also be checked, along with your overall health. It’s possible to develop dry eyes after obtaining LASIK surgery – you will be evaluated for this and will be offered a treatment plan to reduce your risks.
Paying for LASIK Eye Surgery
The relatively high cost is where a lot of people run into when looking for eyesight corrective surgery. The problem is that LASIK eye surgery is considered an elective or cosmetic procedure, so isn’t covered by most major health insurance companies, and even certain stand alone vision plans don’t cover it. You’ll have to check to see if your coverage includes monthly premiums that are set aside specifically for eye surgery.
The health insurance plans that do cover LASIK surgery are normally large specialty unions, which set aside dollars to cover eye surgeries like LASIK. Since it’s the most popular, most plans have a value added LASIK program or offer discounted rates for the procedure.
The Cost for LASIK
LASIK costs vary based on which part of the country you live. If your insurance provider covers some costs or nothing for LASIK eye surgery, then it’s important to know what you’ll have to spend out of pocket. You can also make a more informed decision about where you decide to obtain the procedure from, since certain areas are cheaper than others. The national average for LASIK was $2,259. This is how it breaks down by region:
- West – $2,444
- Midwest – $2,182
- Mountain – $2,091
- South – $2,156
- Northeast – $2,409
Alternative Options for Paying for LASIK
If you have an insurance policy that’s equipped with FSA LASIK programs, then paying for LASIK surgery will be more affordable. Flexible Spending Accounts are connected to certain plans and are designed to save you money on some or all of the procedure, depending on how much you’ve accumulated in the account. Your tax bracket will also determine if you’re eligible for additional tax savings (up to 30 percent). Based on the new federal regulations that came into effect in 2015, you will only be allowed to put up to $2,550 in your flex spending account per year.
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