Latest figures from the Health Protection Agency have shown that cases of the winter vomiting bug, Norovirus, have topped a million.
The figure is 83% higher than this time last year.
The highly contagious bug causes servere vomiting and diarrhoea and can be spread through contaminated surfaces, by coming into contact with someone carrying the bug, or by consuming contaminated food.
The high figures are linked to an earlier start to the winter outbreak than in previous years.
The HPA have stressed that the virus is unpredictable and that no two years are the same.
There had been 3,538 lab-confirmed cases by 16 December, however the actual figure of cases will be much higher as most people will not see a doctor.
John Harris, an expert in Norovirus from the HPA explained that the best way to avoid catching the bug was to wash your hands regularly and stay away from schools, hospitals and care homes as closed environments are the most common places for mass outbreaks.
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