How the boy with no memory gets through life
We all need reminders for everyday tasks and
events... birthdays, meetings or perhaps an appointment at the
But Ricky Dean's memory problems are so severe he has to be told
to do just about everything, from eating to brushing his teeth.
And just like Guy Pearce's character in the film Memento, he is
constantly surrounded by lists and boards to remind him what to do.
His iPhone is also invaluable in making sure he meets up with his
friends at arranged times.
Not only are future events a problem, he also struggles to recall
the past as he has no concept of time.
Ricky, 19, was starved of oxygen when he was born and later
diagnosed with autism. Doctors say there is no name for his
condition and despite his problems he has still gained five GCSEs
(the UK's equivalent to the Higher School Certificate).
"It can be very difficult at times, but my family and friends are
so supportive," he said.
"My mates are constantly having a joke about it, which is good,
telling me I borrowed a tenner from them the week before. I can
never remember if I have or not, so I make a list and if they're
just winding me up I get my own back.
"My condition can be so frustrating for people, especially if they
don't understand that I just don't remember anything to do with
"If I didn't have my lists, telling me to brush my teeth or have
lunch, I would be lost.
"The worst thing is missing appointments with friends and
forgetting good things. I can't look forward to anything, because I
have no concept of time."
When Ricky, of Taunton, Somerset, was 11 his parents took him for
a full memory scan which revealed the full extent of his memory
Until three years ago, Ricky rarely left his family home, because
he could never remember where he was going, but now relies on his
References and further information