Flu cases continue to rise in Central New York, while the Centers for Disease Control continues to urge people to get the vaccine.

In Oneida County, there have been 53 confirmed cases of Influenza so far this flu season. Across the country, the number of flu cases are going up - with New York City, New Jersey, and much of the Southern part of the United States hardest hit. In fact, the number of states reporting widespread flu activity has doubled.

The CDC says New York as a whole is experiencing moderate levels of activity for flu-like illness.

How Can You Keep Yourself Safe From The Flu?

According to the CDC, the best way to prevent the flu is to get a flu shot.

You should also frequently wash your hands.

Be sure to stay home if you feel sick.

What are signs and symptoms of the flu?

The flu is not just a really bad cold. The flu is a contagious illness that affects the nose, throat, lungs, and other parts of the body. It can spread quickly from one person to another. It can cause mild to severe illness, and at times can lead to death.

Unlike a cold, flu symptoms start suddenly. They appear about 1 to 4 days after a person is exposed to the flu.

Flu symptoms may include:

  • Fever or feeling feverish/chills
  • Cough
  • Sore throat
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • Tiredness
  • Some people have vomiting or diarrhea. This is more common in children.