Icing the shoulder, resting, slowly returning to activity and using over-the-counter pain medication are all treatments for shoulder pain, according to MedlinePlus. A physical therapist can help a person find the right exercises for shoulder pain.
Icing the shoulder is recommended for 15 minutes at a time and should be done three or four times a day for two or three days, explains MedlinePlus. Rest the shoulder for a couple of days following the icing, and slowly return to regular activity. Consider over-the-counter pain medication, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen.
Though most shoulder pain is mild, there are instances in which immediate medical assistance is recommended by MedlinePlus. Shoulder pain that comes on suddenly may be a sign of a heart attack, so call 911 in the case of shoulder pain that radiates to the jaw, neck or arm. Go to the emergency room if the shoulder is injured, bleeding, swollen or bruised.
If the shoulder pain comes with a fever, problems moving the shoulder or swelling, make an appointment with a primary doctor, recommends MedlinePlus. Make an appointment if there is no relief from home treatment, if the shoulder is red or blue or if the shoulder is swollen.