With flu season now in full swing causing widespread illness in 46 states, health officials across the country are reporting waves of misery, rising hospitalizations and some deaths.

For example:  The Ohio Department of Health on Friday reported 2,104 flu associated hospitalizations so far.

California Department of Public Health officials said that flu contributed to the deaths of 27 people younger than age 65 across the state by the end of December.

According to USA Today and the CDC, the season began early, and the number of states reporting widespread flu activity jumped from 36 to 46 in the last week of December.

The CDC and flu experts say vaccination is still the best bet, and it's not too late for a flu shot.