I bought these Oticon OPN 1 HAs over 3 years ago. I was excited about it because I thought my hearing would be better, and the technology would make a difference in many areas. I arranged to purchase them from the audiologist who had fitted my first hearing aids about 15 years ago, because he agreed to accept the price that a discount online company would accept. He said he would offer service for the period of warranty, which I think is 4 years. Unfortunately, I only had two weeks to try them out. People on this site often talk about long trial periods, but the only place I have found that offers that is Costco. I trust Costco, but they have limited options in hearing aids.
The HAs I had before these were Starkeys, and I was never thrilled with them either. I know that HAs don’t duplicate normal hearing, but I felt the Starkeys were just not a good fit for me. But of course after you spend thousands of dollars, you’re stuck with what you have. I bought my first hearing aids, Phonak Elevas, because I was teaching large groups of college students, and I couldn’t hear questions from the class. I had a mild to moderate loss at that time. I think they were okay. A fairly accurate test of my current hearing is on this site.
Before I bought the Oticon OPN 1s I tried some Resounds from Costco, but I felt they were too powerful, or “hot” for me, so I returned them. After a good bit of research and a trial of Widex HAs, I read a lot of positive reviews of the OPN1s, and bought them.
I am wondering if the way the Oticon OPN 1s work is simply not a match for my hearing loss. I understand that they leave sounds open, in a sense, so that the wearer hears background noise. I would like to be able to hear as much as possible, so I thought I would like that. In groups, I can’t ever hear conversation. I can’t hear most dialogue in television movies, no matter how loud I turn it up. I know tv sound tends to be poor these days, but not hearing the dialogue ruins the program for me. I do a lot of work by telephone, and I often have difficult understanding. This is particularly difficult for someone who always understood difficult accents, since I’ve studied 5 languages. Music is totally ruined, and the current settings distort all sounds horribly.
For the past couple of years these hearing aids shut down whenever they feel like it. Frequently I will put in a new battery, the same batteries I’ve used for years, and the HA will shut down soon afterwards. I have gone through way too many batteries, having to replace them right after putting in a new one. The batteries are not expired. I have seen the audiologist repeatedly, and she has sent the HAs to Oticon 3 times.
I have wondered if these are simply lemons. I have wondered if the audiologist, a lovely person, simply doesn’t know how to adjust them. I am tired of continually going back to repeated appointments.
I am looking for something that will allow me to hear with some measure of quality again. I’ve thought of buying a device that just amplifies sound, so I can watch movies and hear the dialogue. And maybe I can hear my clients better on the phone.
I am looking for advice from any of you out there who have suggestions about my situation, especially if you are familiar with the Oticon OPN1s. My solution will not include seeking an audiologist who is getting wealthy overcharging for hearing aids, but if you are an audiologist with suggestions, thank you for any assistance you may have. I am shocked when I read what some people pay. Thanks for any suggestions, everyone.