While the cold air itself has nothing to do with the spread of viruses, many of us are spending more time indoors and closer together, making the spread of the influenza virus more common.
First District Health Unit Director of Nursing
Penny Hamilton says there have only been a few documented cases of Influenza B in North Dakota this year, but surrounding states are facing influenza hospitalizations.
It's not too late to get a flu shot!
Hamilton says true influenza is a respiratory illness: sore throat, body aches, fever and cough.
She says vomiting and diarrhea are gastrointestinal 'bugs' that are NOT associated with the flu.
Hamilton says it's complications associated with the flu - like pneumonia - that are the greatest cause for concern.
(Penny Hamilton, First District Health Unit Director of Nursing) "Common cold generally you don't have those body aches, common cold is generally you have a sore throat, cough, runny nose and things are different for every person but the flu tends to hang on for a little bit longer."
Hamilton says a number of people in the area have reported a strain of the common cold with a cough that hangs on for about three weeks.