CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD)- According to the Centers for Disease Control cases of norovirus have been on the rise across the United States since January.

The virus is the cause of the common stomach flu and one Lowcountry doctor says that parents need to take measures to protect their families from getting sick.

“I think part of it is the masks coming off. We are just exposed to more people. With more exposure we can get more of these viruses,” said Doctor Vinitha Nareddy of Roper St. Francis Hospital. “We see a spike between November and April. I anticipate it will be around for the next couple of weeks.”

At home, Dr. Nareddy suggests cleaning produce from the grocery store and other items that you buy.

Dr. Nareddy also says that parents should be make sure that daycares and schools are sanitizing surfaces and conducting temperature checks regularly. Contaminated surfaces help the virus spread from person to person.

The symptoms include stomach pain, nausea and diarrhea.

“Daycares have sets of rules and regulations in place to prevent illness. If kids have an episode of vomiting or diarrhea then they should send the kid home if need be,” said Dr. Nareddy.

Roper St. Francis Hospital, The Medical University of South Carolina and Trident Medical Center all tell News 2 that they have not seen any cases of norovirus that required hospitalization.