Conservative treatments that can expedite healing of the rotator cuff include resting the shoulder and applying ice, according to Mayo Clinic. Physical therapy exercises for the rotator cuff can restore strength and flexibility. Doctors sometimes recommend cortisone injections to reduce pain.
Patients with rotator cuff injuries should avoid any movements or positions that cause pain, instructs WebMD. Although rest is critical, gentle shoulder movement encourages recovery, and a patient should slowly move her arm through its full range of motion multiple times per day.
During the first 48 hours after rotator cuff pain begins, the patient should apply ice to the injured shoulder two or three times per day, for as long as 20 minutes at a time, advises WebMD. After two to three days, the patient can apply moist heat to the shoulder.