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Tired of constantly filing my hot water bottle and desperate for some relief from my back pain I bought this heat pad from Argos for £20.00. It has now become my trusty companion. The heat pad is large enough to cover your entire upper or lower back depending on where the pain is and it comes with a washable cover. As I only bought mine a few days ago I haven't washed it yet so cant vouch for how it comes out in the wash however, the cover is soft cotton so, it feels comfy and I am sure it will wash up just fine. The heat pad plugs into the wall socket or extension cable with a regular three prong plug and has a thermostat attached. No batteries are required. The thermostat is located near to the pad so is in easy reach if you are lying on the pad. It has 3 heat settings. I just blast the temperature up to 3 at all times which I find to be just right not burning hot but hot enough to aid your aching back. Anything cooler that the top setting just wont cut it for me. This mini electric blanket will switch its self off after a while to regulate the temperature and keep you safe. The heat pad would be useful for any type of ache or pain and would also come in handy is your suffering from menstrual cramps. It only takes a few minutes to get to a toasty temperature. I am pleased with this purchase. It doesn't remove my back pain but then I am not sure anything short of heavy duty painkillers will sort that out but...it does make it a little easier to cope with. If you suffer from muscular pain I would recommend your snuggle up with this little blanket.