The parents of a five year old girl who died after drinking too much grape soda have been arrested on charges of child abuse resulting in death. It appears they made the kindergartner drink about two liters of grape soda and water over a two hour period as part of a punishment. This caused brain swelling, and the child died in a hospital shortly thereafter.
Aside from being an example of how bizarre and excessive punishments can end in disaster, this case sheds light on a little known medical hazard; water intoxication. While we all need liquids to survive, consuming too much H2O in a short period of time floods the system and acts like a poison. Cells can't function properly, organs shut down, then the brain is flooded and swells. (This is actually the primary cause of death when it comes to Ecstasy. The drug can cause an acute thirst, and people literally drink themselves to death.)
It's a tragic story, but one we hope you will share with as many people as possible. Like most abusive parents, I suspect this couple loved their child and was simply ignorant of the danger and inappropriateness of their discipline technique. Let's spread the word in hopes that others don't make the same mistake.
Visit http://www.keepyourchildsafe.org/child-abuse.html to find more information about child abuse.