The gingivitis index is designed to give a quantitative measure of the degree of inflammation of the gingival associated with a particular tooth. Once plaque accumulates on the tooth surface, initial gingivitis begins in 2-4 days as the host mounts an immune response to the invading bacteria. The intensity of gingivitis is determined by the quantity and quality of the microorganisms present. When gingivitis is manifest clinically, there is generally a plaque layer of 400um thick. Once this occurs, the host’s response is to produce an exudate, elevated sulcus fluid flow and leukocyte (PMN) infiltration. The Gingivitis Index (GI #) is classified as follows:
GI 0 normal healthy gingiva with sharp non inflamed margins.
GI 1 marginal gingivitis with minimal inflammation and oedema at the free gingiva. No bleeding on probing.
GI 2 moderate gingivitis with an increase in inflammation and oedema throughout free gingivia and delayed bleeding upon probing.
GI 3 advanced gingivitis with inflammation clinically reaching the mucogingival junction usually with ulceration. Immediate bleeding on probing.
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