The holidays are over, but flu season has only just begun in Oklahoma.
The number of influenza cases tend to peak in Oklahoma in February, according to data from the Oklahoma Health Department’s website.
April Claxton, a registered nurse with Carter County Health Department, said she doesn’t know why the flu hits so aggressively in February for sure, but she has a theory.
“With the flu, you may not show symptoms for several days, or you might be showing only a few symptoms,” Claxton said. “I think we’re all spending a lot of time together during the holidays, and then after the holidays you see the peak.”  
According to the OHDS, there have been 10 flu-related deaths in Oklahoma as of last Thursday. No one in Carter County has died, but there have been several flu-related hospitalizations.
Claxton said when a person has an elevated fever for several hours that doesn’t respond to any over-the-counter medicine, it’s time to take them to the hospital.
“When fever goes untreated over the course of several hours, it can cause several other things to happen, especially for young children” Claxton said.
Claxton said as always, hand-washing, coughing etiquette and other basic hygiene practices is key to prevention.
“We come into contact with so much stuff during the day,” Claxton said. “Hand washing is still the single most important thing in preventing infections from spreading.”
The health department is still offering free flu vaccinations.