Tax Deductions for Medical and Dental Expenses

If you have a large medical expense this year, consider itemizing your deductions with TaxSlayer.

If you have significant medical expenses that are not reimbursed by your insurance plan, you may choose to itemize your deductions in order to receive some relief on your taxes. Learn what you can claim as a tax deduction for out-of-pocket medical and dental costs.  

According to the IRS, the following expenses can be deducted from your tax return: 

  • Dental care 
  • Vision care 
  • Preventative care  
  • Treatment  
  • Prescription medications   
  • Surgeries 
  • Visits to psychologists   
  • Visits to psychiatrists  
  • Appliances like glasses, contacts, false teeth, and hearing aids   


In addition to these specific services, the IRS will allow you to deduct certain travel expenses related to medical care. For example, if you need to travel to a different city to receive specialized treatment, you may be able to deduct mileage, parking fees at the hospital or care facility, and even bus or train fares.  

For a more detailed list of medical and dental items you can deduct, read What kinds of medical and dental expenses can or cannot be deducted? 

Medical expenses that can’t be deducted for taxes

If you pay for some expenses out of pocket but then are reimbursed by your employer or insurance company, those expenses cannot be deducted on your federal tax return.  

According to the IRS, the following expenses are not deductible: 

  • Out-of-pocket medical expenses reimbursed to you from your employer  
  • Cosmetic procedures 
  • Over-the-counter drugs (with exception to insulin) 
  • Health-related items and services like: 
  • Hygiene products (deodorant, toothpaste, etc.) 
  • Vitamins and supplements  
  • Diet plans and fitness memberships  
  • Prior-year medical expenses 

How much can I deduct for medical expenses?

For tax year 2022, the IRS allows you to deduct qualified medical expenses that exceed 7.5% of your AGI if you use itemize your deductions. Remember: these expenses must be unreimbursed.

Will my state let me deduct medical and dental expenses from my income taxes?

More than half of U.S. states allow taxpayers to deduct medical expenses, but some states have rules that differ from federal regulations. View the chart below to find your state’s regulations. 

State  Medical Expense Deduction 
Alabama, Nebraska  Expenses that exceed 4% of your AGI 
Alaska, Florida, Nevada, Tennessee, South Dakota, Texas, Washington, Wyoming, New Hampshire, Michigan  No individual income tax 
Arizona  All qualified medical expenses are allowed 
Arkansas, South Carolina, Virginia  Expenses that exceed 10% of your AGI 
California, Georgia, Delaware, Iowa, Hawaii, Idaho, Kansas, Maine, Ohio, New York, Massachusetts, Montana, North Carolina, Oregon, Oklahoma, Washington D.C. 





Expenses that exceed 7.5% of your federal AGI  
Connecticut, Indiana, Louisiana, Missouri, Kentucky, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, North Dakota, Maryland, Utah 


State tax law prohibits taxpayers from deducting medical expenses on state returns. 
New Jersey  Expenses that exceed 2% of your AGI 
Rhode Island  This state does not recognize the federal itemized schedule. 
Vermont, Colorado  This state does not offer an option to itemize deductions on state returns. 
Wisconsin  This deduction is for citizens whose medical expenses exceed $35/month. Eligibility is subject to several requirements 
New Mexico  Deductible amount is determined by specific requirements.  

How to claim the medical expenses deduction

You must itemize your deductions to claim your medical costs, so you will need to file a Schedule A. When you file your return, TaxSlayer will make sure all the information is entered in the correct place and the calculations are 100% accurate.    

For more specific information on claiming this deduction, read Can I claim my medical and dental expenses? 

This article was last updated on 12/20/2022.

This article is intended to provide general information to the public and does not provide personalized tax, investment, legal, or business advice. You should seek the assistance of a professional for advice on taxes, investments, and any other financial, legal, or business matter pertinent to your individual situation.

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