Medical and dental expense deductions

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Updated: 1/10/2008 8:29 am
To alleviate the high cost of health care, you can take advantage of tax breaks allowed by the IRS for medical and dental expenses. To qualify, your medical and dental expenses for the year must be higher than the '7.5 percent limit' of your adjusted gross income. Once your expenses exceed this percentage, you can deduct the cost of treatments from physicians, dentists, and other practitioners. The expense of buying medical aids such as glasses, contact lenses, wheelchairs, and hearing aids can be deducted as well. If you used your car for medical reasons, you can claim 18 cents a mile. Additionally, certain health insurance premiums, and most medical tests and procedures will count as deductions. And, if you're self-employed, up to 100 percent of your health insurance costs can be deducted. Medical-related expenses that are not deductible include cosmetic surgery performed for appearance only and over-the-counter medications. Keep in mind that you should maintain good records showing what you and your insurance company have paid. These tips are meant to provide general information on federal income taxes. For specific advice, please consult a tax advisor or call the toll-free number for Federal Tax Information and Assistance at 1-800-829-1040.

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