A Scottish council has urged residents to stick to government guidelines and protect each other amid a sharp rise in Covid cases in the last few weeks.

People living in Stirling have been warned that the virus is "entering schools, care homes and communities", and the area risks being moved into level four restrictions.

Council leader Scott Farmer said in a matter of weeks, Stirling has gone from Forth Valley's lowest area of concern to the highest.

"People are still losing their lives, their loved ones and their jobs," he said. "Our fear is that a lack of compliance with the national guidance is allowing the virus to take hold again, so we owe it to each other to take a step back and ask ourselves - are we really doing all we can as individuals, families and communities to stop the spread?"

READ MORE: 'Too slow' contact tracing for over 8,600 cases coincided with Scotland's second wave

Currently, the area is in level three of the Scottish Government's five-tier scale, and has gone from having 2979 cases on November 6 to 3314 on November 13.

Deputy First Minister John Swinney revealed on Friday that "active consideration" is underway of whether to put several areas in Scotland into the toughest level of restrictions.

He said there was a concern that current level 3 restrictions had not down enough to drive down infections.

Stirling was highlighted as an area which had experienced a spike in infections in the briefing on Friday, leading to concerns it could be placed in a higher level.

The health board's director of public health, Dr Graham Foster, admitted that the number of Covid cases in Stirling had not fallen as expected, and said it was partly due to an increase in cases in care homes.

Mr Farmer added: "The restrictions we are currently under are incredibly difficult for us all, but they serve to protect us, and if they're ignored then the ripple effect can spread far beyond our own households.

"We're at a crucial point in our battle to contain this lethal virus and I'm pleading with the people of Stirling - prove our community spirit to the rest of Scotland and let's take responsibility for protecting each other."

A mobile testing unit has been set up this weekend for the areas of Bannockburn, Plean and Cowie following a number of positive tests.

READ MORE: Scotland's 100 Covid cases hotspots revealed

Saturday and Sunday will see the unit based at Bannockburn High School, before it then moves around other community venues over the next week.

NHS Forth Valley consultant in public health, Dr Henry Prempeh, said: "This is a precautionary measure but one which we feel is essential due to Bannockburn and these surrounding areas being such close-knit communities.

"I would encourage local people to book a test even if they currently feel well as there is evidence that some people can have Covid-19 without displaying any of the common symptoms."