Are You Aware Of the Potential Risks Associated With Absinthe Consumption?

Absinthe is an alcoholic drink with a high alcohol content, consisting of botanicals and medicinal herbs, which heightens its potential risks. Similar to the effects and dangers of alcohol consumption, drinking absinthe can result in intoxication, hallucinations, judgment impairment, alcohol dependence, and addiction.

What is Absinthe Alcohol?

Absinthe, an herb-infused alcoholic beverage known as “The Green Fairy,” is a derivative of dried wormwood (Artemesia absinthium), anise, and fennel. The alcohol content of absinthe is notably high in comparison to other standard liquors, which generally contain 40% alcohol. Absinthe contains up to 74% alcohol by volume (ABV), contributing to its detrimental risks and effects. Before being the main ingredient in absinthe, wormwood was a botanical plant used for medicinal purposes. Wormwood would reduce pain and inflammation, fight bacteria and parasites, and treat indigestion.

One of the chemicals in pure wormwood, thujone, has been linked to producing toxic effects, causing hallucinations and seizures. Since wormwood is a primary ingredient in absinthe, it has been associated with the hallucinogenic and psychoactive effects experienced with absinthe.

The Effects of Absinthe

Absinthe’s effects can vary depending on the individual, the amount consumed, and potency. Just like any alcoholic beverage, excessive drinking can result in alcohol poisoning, injuries, accidents, addiction, and death. Chronic absinthe consumption has been associated with seizures, auditory and visual hallucinations, and speech impairments. Modern-day absinthe beverages are often advertised for producing aphrodisiac, cannabis-like, and psychoactive effects.

Due to such minimal current evidence of manufactured absinthe alcoholic beverages, its effects can be associated with those in common alcoholism.

The Potential Risks of Absinthe Consumption

The effects of absinthe consumption are comparable to the effects of alcohol. One of the leading differences between alcohol and absinthe is the herbs that contribute to convulsions and hallucinations. The herbal mix in absinthe, along with its high alcohol content, raises the risks and intoxicating effects. Like regular alcohol and liquors, absinthe can threaten the physical and mental health of users, potentially resulting in long-term health risks and addiction.

High Alcohol Content

Absinthe’s alcohol content ranges from 45% to 74% alcohol by volume (ABV), which is notably high compared to other spirits. This can enhance the effects of acute alcohol intoxication and its associated risks. The risks of alcohol intoxication can include alcohol poisoning, judgment impairment, loss of coordination, unresponsiveness, coma, and death.

Thujone: Wormwoods Compound

Thujone, wormwood’s primary compound, can produce toxic effects, contributing to hallucinations and convulsions. These psychoactive effects are less common in modern-day absinthe since beverages with thujone are illegal in the U.S. Legal absinthe is typically thujone-free or contains significantly low levels of thujone. Throughout the 19th and 20th centuries, “absinthism” had been linked to detrimental effects like epilepsy, brain damage, acute auditory and visual hallucinations, mental health disorders, and suicide.

Famous artists and creatives like Oscar Wilde and Vincent van Gogh frequently drank absinthe in the 1800s, potentially leading to van Gogh’s illness. While there is minimal current evidence on absinthe’s effects now, it is essential to consider its substantial alcohol content and unpredictable effects.

Mental Health and Absinthe Use

Like alcohol, absinthe can generate feelings of euphoria and excitement and reduce social anxiety. In opposition, the after-effects of alcohol consumption can cause depression, anxiety, and other mood-related issues. Chronic absinthe consumption can lead to the development of mental health disorders like anxiety disorders and depression. For those with existing mental health conditions, consuming absinthe can exacerbate these conditions while also counteracting medications.

Long-Term Health Risks

Regularly consuming any beverage high in alcohol content can lead to an increased risk of injuries, accidents, alcohol poisoning, substance abuse, and addiction. Heavy drinking heightens the risk of alcoholic liver disease (ALD), organ damage, neurotoxicity, and psychiatric conditions.

Absinthe abuse can lead to dependence and addiction, resulting in long-term health risks, including but not limited to:

  • High blood pressure
  • Heart disease
  • Alcohol poisoning
  • Liver disease
  • Fibrosis
  • Cirrhosis
  • Increased risk of cancer
  • Gastrointestinal issues
  • Learning and memory impairments
  • Mental health disorders
  • Social and relationship problems
  • Alcoholism and substance use disorders (SUDs)

Given the high alcohol content in absinthe, the health risks associated with long-term absinthe use are similar to the effects of alcohol use disorder (AUD).

Absinthe Abuse and Addiction

The impact of absinthe abuse and addiction can lead to a range of physical, psychological, and social problems. Alcohol use disorder (AUD), also called alcoholism, alcohol dependence, and alcohol addiction, puts one’s health and safety at risk for alcohol-related health issues and impairments. Addressing absinthe abuse and addiction requires a multifaceted treatment approach combining alcohol detox and addiction treatment, behavioral therapies, psychotherapies, and support groups like Alcoholics Anonymous (A.A.). An unhealthy pattern of absinthe use can lead to the onset of or exacerbation of existing mental and physical health issues.

Getting help and treatment for alcohol addiction sooner rather than later can limit the impact of severe health problems associated with alcoholism.

Getting Treatment for Absinthe and Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD)

Identifying the signs of alcohol use disorder (AUD) as a result of absinthe abuse and addiction is crucial for receiving proper care and treatment. Alcohol detox and withdrawal symptoms are often uncomfortable, resulting in nausea, vomiting, sweating, headaches, and fever. As the body detoxes from the alcohol addiction, the liver begins to filter out the alcohol and any associated toxins in the body. The alcohol withdrawal process in an alcohol rehab or detox center provides professional medical assistance and round-the-clock supervision.

After undergoing detox for alcohol addiction, receiving treatment and care at a drug and alcohol rehab facility can help ensure long-term sobriety. Through addiction treatment and therapeutic care, recovering from an alcohol addiction is attainable.


Are you seeking drug detox treatment in Florida for alcoholism and absinthe abuse? Coastal Detox offers a variety of drug and alcohol detox programs in Stuart, FL. Reach out and get sober today!





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  • Van Gogh Museum. Café Table with Absinthe.
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