Good section - but I have a few things to add about vertical clitoral hood piercings, in particular. Why? Because I have one!
I have a 1/2" 14 gauge straight barbel down there, which was the jewelry recommended to me by my piercer. It fits very well with my anatomy. The bottom ball rests under the hood, right above/touching the top of my clit.
I did a lot of research, but I wasn't prepared for the exact placement. She didn't pierce through the top surface of the hood, but at the top "corner" where the hood meets my inner labia. This means she pierced through about 1/4" of tissue!
It hurt like hell and was very intense, but that only lasted a second. I felt warm/sore/throby for about two days, and was completely healed within the month. Normal healing time is about 4 weeks. I was told that I could have sex as soon as I felt comfortable, so long as I took precautions and keep the area clean. I didn't adhere to a rigorous cleaning schedule, but I did a few hot soaks at first. Later I just washed with saline before bed - and in between I tried very hard not to play with the piercing. That was the hardest part, really. I wanted to show everyone and touch it all the time!
This is my only body piercing, and I absolutely love it. Really. Between the cost of the piercing, the jewelry, the saline spray, and the tip I spent exactly $100, but it was the best $100 I've ever spent on anything.