SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Chances are you know of someone who’s had the flu this winter.

The South Dakota Department of Health continues to report widespread flu activity.

53% of the flu cases confirmed by the State Health Department last week were in kids under the age of 18.

At Sanford Castle, pediatricians like Dr. Jody Huber have seen their fair share of cases.

“Our influenza cases started coming up in November, right when RSV was peaking. We started seeing influenza. Our RSV has started coming down, and we have definitely seen more influenza. I would say our hospital test positivity rate is right around 50 percent, and it’s been like that for the last three weeks, so we’ve definitely seen quite a bit of influenza in the hospital, including in the ICU,” said Dr. Huber.

Dr. Huber says it’s not always easy for parents to know when to take their kids to see the doctor but offers some guidelines.

“When their child is having difficulty breathing, if it seems like they are breathing very fast or using extra muscles or working hard to breathe, also if they are not being able to stay hydrated if they are not feeling well they are not drinking well not having wet diapers we would encourage them to go and see their pediatrician or emergency room physician,” said Huber.

Huber says a fever can usually be treated with Tylenol or ibuprofen and kids don’t need to see a doctor as long as they’re eating, drinking and their breathing is ok.

The flu in KELOLAND often peaks in mid to late February, but last year it was early January. Doctors are wondering if that will be the case again this year since flu season got off to an early start. The shorter the flu season the better.

“We’re not quite sure what to expect this season,” said Huber. “It seems that the seasonality of our viruses seems to be a little bit off ever since Covid, but you’re right that we usually see the peak somewhere in February or march and this year it seems to be earlier we are guesstimating that it will peak somewhere around now and go down but we are not quite sure if it’s just going to stay high for a while or if it will go down.”

Rest and plenty of liquids are usually enough to get people past the flu without any serious complications.

Prescription antiviral drugs can reduce the severity of influenza if started within two days of the onset of symptoms.