Cold temperatures keep many of us indoors and close together.
And the close quarters can contribute to flu season, and with it, the potentially deadly strain of flu: H1N1, sometimes known as swine flu.
And it is back in North Dakota.
Twenty-three cases of H1N1 have already been reported in the state this season and North Dakota Department of Health officials say 12 of those who have the virus are from Ward County.
But why are the numbers so high locally?
(Danell Ekklund, RN, First District Health Unit) "Sometimes it's just because we do more testing, we have more facilities to do testing, and so sometimes why numbers show up more disproportionately across the state. It's early, we're increasing the numbers across the nation, are increasing early. And getting the flu vaccine, the more the community is getting vaccinated, the less virus there is in the community.Vaccines work on prevention only. They don't ever help once you have, but if you get it before it takes about two weeks and then you're protected against the flu."
To get your shot at the First District Health Unit clinic, walk in Monday through Friday 8:30 - noon, or 1:00-4:00
Shots cost about $32 and nasal vaccines are $45.