The number of people killed by the flu in North Carolina this year now stands at 12, after four more people died because of the illness last week.
The CDC classifies the flu activity in North Carolina right now as "widespread," which is the highest level possible. Usually, flu activity does not get this high before the end of the year.
Of the 12 people who have died from the flu in North Carolina, state health officials say nine of them have been 65 years old or older. People in that age category are considered at risk from complications of the flu. One of the flu victims was between the ages of 50 and 64, while two were between the ages of 25 and 49.
According to the CDC, people who have the flu often feel some or all of these symptoms:
-Fever or feeling feverish/chills
-Runny or stuffy nose
-Muscle or body aches
-Some people may have vomiting and diarrhea, though this is more common in children than adults.
The CDC says it's important to note that not all people with the flu will have a fever. The agency also says the best way to prevent the flu is to get the flu vaccine.