Read this tip to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Tongue Rings and other Body Jewelry topics.
Most tongue piercings are fitted with barbell jewelry -- a thin piece of metal or plastic with two balls on either end. In fact, if you hear reference to a tongue ring, it's usually just the piercing that's being spoken of, since it's very rare to actually put a ring through the tongue.
Tongue piercings usually heal in 4 to 6 weeks with proper care. For those who are concerned about hiding their tongue rings -- say, in the workplace -- there are barbells that come with translucent beads, which will take on the color of your tongue, thereby camouflaging the piercing. (It also helps if you don't stick your tongue out much at work!)
After the tongue is healed, it's perfectly fine to switch jewelry. However, don't wait too long; even large holes can close up in just a few hours' time.