ARKANSAS-- It's prime flu season and numbers are on the rise. Health officials are reminding folks that the virus is more than the common cold and complications can be dangerous and even deadly.
Loy Bailey with the Benton County Health Department said, "The flu can be extremely severe in certain cases."
For some with higher risk factors, catching the illness can be even more serious.
"There are certain segments of the population that might be more prone than others.You're looking at children under five years old, those that are 65 years old and older", said Bailey.
Many think the shot will do more harm than good. However, Bailey said "the flu vaccine will not make you sick.. there are some indications where someone may experience some type symptoms, a day or two afterwards from redness but you're not getting the flu."
With flu season extending through to march, health officials are hoping more people get a headstart on winter health.
Bailey said, "It's not too late. We are excouraging people who have not yet received their flu vaccination to certainly get one."
Local health units in Northwest Arkansas: http://www.healthy.arkansas.gov/programsServices/localPublicHealthOffices/Pages/huRegions.aspx?region=Northwest