Doctor Jeffrey Swanson is a family physician at United Regional Physician Group.
He says he's seen dozens of patients seeking relief from flu-like symptoms but he says not all of those patients actually tested positive for the flu.
"They have either a simple cold virus or what we call a influenza-like illness which can mimic the flu with things like body aches, fevers and cough and congestion. The difference between influenza and actually someone who has a cold virus or an influenza like reaction is mostly that you can control the symptoms with Tylenol, Motrin, Advil," Dr. Swanson says.
Swanson says make no mistake!
The flu is going around the area.
Since November 28th, 139 people have tested positive for the flu at United Regional and officials say 122 of those cases were treated in the emergency room.
Last year Roy Pierce came to United Regional's E.R. and was hospitalized for two weeks.
And he says it started small then snowballed.
"A little cough turned into something major then all of a sudden I started having flu symptoms and pneumonia symptoms just right off the bat. So, It's nothing to play with," says Pierce.
That's why he agrees with Dr. Swanson who urges people to take precautions by washing their hands often, staying hydrated and getting a flu shot.
Mechell Dixon... KFDX 3 News.
Dr. Swanson understands the flu can make you feel miserable but he advises patients to first try to control their cough, fever and other flu-like symptoms with over-the-counter medications.
And he says if that doesn't work after two or three days then call your doctor or go to a walk-in health clinic.
That way you can help reduce the spread of the virus throughout the community.