i had my cartilage pierced as well as my tongue (since 19) and im 32.
the cartilage peirce was done at a part; my little sister thought it would be funny to peirce it. well let me tell u... even thought i was drunk it hurt more then my tongue it took forever too heal.. irritated me for around a year.. now that could be because it wasnt a gauged peirce. i havent had a ring in it in 5 years and i can still put a ring in it (wife doesnt like it so i dont wear it).
on a side note; peircings are temporary tattoos are forever... dont just get a tattoo for no reason.. give it meaning, put some thought into it, and make sure its something ull like in 10 years.