Treating patients from ‘womb to tomb’

New chiropractor in Rockford specializes in prenatal and pediatrics


Dr. J. Avery Karns, doctor of chiropractic, considered becoming a veterinarian when she was young, but never considered becoming a medical or surgical doctor. She chose chiropractic care as her profession because she believes in the value of holistic, preventative treatment and the many benefits of chiropractic treatment. Karns has joined the offices of Healthy Life Pain & Performance Solutions (which was Newman Chiropractic for many years), 120 Marcell Avenue in Rockford.

“I always believed in a natural, non-drug, non-surgery kind of life,” she stated. “As a kid I was kind of an anomaly. I liked my vegetables more than meat.”

Karns said she wanted to go into a field that helped people live healthier lives, in part because she saw how many don’t have a healthy lifestyle. “Chiropractic care can make a huge difference in one’s quality of life.”

“Chiropractors are doctors of the nervous system,” she said. “It is the master system of the body. All direction from the brain to the body goes through the nervous system to every tissue in the body. When the nervous system is functioning correctly, everything else should function correctly.”

Karns specializes in prenatal and pediatric care and has seen dramatic and quick response to treatment. Patients who come in suffering severe discomfort can often experience immediate relief. She said in pregnancy, maintaining optimal nerve function is especially important. Karns’ treatments help an expecting woman’s pelvis be as open and as prepared for birth as possible. Manipulation of the pelvis also allows more room for the baby growing inside. Chiropractic treatment can help balance pelvic bones, nerves, muscles and ligaments, which may allow the unborn child to move toward the proper head-down position for delivery. Dr. Karns wants her patients and general public to know that this Webster technique is NOT a baby-turning technique and is meant solely to enhance proper space and nerve function in the pelvis. Research shows pre-labor chiropractic care, specifically the Webster technique, can encourage a safer head-down baby position. Newborns are also prime candidates for chiropractic treatment.

“In a hospital birth, there is a lot of hands-on involvement,” she said, and a delicate infant can suffer stress to the spinal column during birth. Gentle contact can help realign the spinal column and improve early development. Chiropractic care boosts immune systems, affects lungs and increases white blood cells, which are the body’s defense against illness. “There is a lot to know about that type of manipulation,” Karns said of her field of focus.

Chiropractic treatments can help prevent a host of typical childhood illnesses and disorders, from asthma, sleep disorders, ear infections, allergies, colic and bedwetting. These same benefits that improve the well-being and development of infants and kids are also health-promoting in adults and as people age.

“I like to say I treat my patients from the womb to the tomb,” Karns said.

She said she enjoys the healing aspect of her interaction with patients. To have a person come in to the office in obvious discomfort and walk out standing straighter and feeling better is a profound experience, Karns stated.

Karns has been treating patients since 2008 and joined Healthy Life Pain & Performance Solutions after relocating here from Dallas, Texas a year ago. She is the third chiropractor in the company, along with doctors Royce Newman and Steven Mikulak.

“I really like it here,” she said. “This place has a good vibe. You can tell it is a place of healing.”

If you have any questions about this article, Dr. J. Avery Karns will be happy to provide references of chiropractic and medical research for conditions mentioned.

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