I’ve known I have hearing loss and tinnitus for years, but also knew I could not afford hearing aids ($10,000 here in Australia for Opn1 or Linx 3D 9) so have never done anything about it in the past. However it’s gotten bad enough that it’s affecting my work so it’s time to bite the bullet and do something.
So I’ve been researching for the last week, and had a hearing test yesterday, which confirmed typical mild to moderate ski slope high frequency hearing loss. The local audiologist is encouraging me towards Opn3 aids, which she says is $5,000 vs $10,000 for Opn1 or Linx 3D 9.
I can purchase what look like genuine aids from overseas for about $4,000 for either the Opn1’s or Linx 3D 9’s, but I’d probably have no warranty and have to find a local who would support it and pay for every consult instead of some inclusions with a local purchase, so maybe another $1,000 in consult fees if no hiccups.
So that’s the background, now to my specific question. I work in a public school front office, among other things handling queries from parents, children and staff, face to face and on the phone. At bust times there can be 5 or 6 conversations happening at once within our small office area. I currently have a lot of trouble (and make embarrassing mistakes regularly) when I have to answer the phoen and cannot understand what they are saying. After asking someone to repeat themselves 3 times, you just try and make your best guess at what they’ve said, which isn’t always right. So this is one of the biggest problems I’d like solved by getting hearing aids.
My office phone is a standard PABX system supplied to government. I could possible get a bluetooth headset added, but that’s probably the extent of modifications available, and since I’m a bit iphone hser and will be relying on it’s bluetooth connection, swapping signals may be an issue. I also rove around the school and use similar phones in other classrooms too, but that is a more minor use to my office phone.
So, what’s my best options for improving understanding of phone conversations with the Opn or Linx 3D aids? Should I be definitely looking at the telecoil models to have that option, not knowing if our phone system is compatible? (We get a new system in 2020 so by then I could request it)
Given my hearing loss isn’t severe, could I drop the telecoil and go for the smaller models (such as the 961) since I also have to fit around my glasses so smaller aids may be better, and just try and hold the phone against the aid microphones, or would I be limiting my options without telecoil?
I really need to be able to hear phone conversations well to do my job properly. Any thoughts greatly appreciated. Sorry for the long post.