How to Deactivate Your Instagram Account – 2023 Complete Guide

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With over 2 billion monthly active users, Instagram has become a daily habit for many people. But constant connectivity can have downsides – which is why some look to deactivate their accounts.

In this extensive guide, we‘ll cover everything you need to know about deactivating your Instagram account in 2023:

Here‘s what we‘ll explore:

  • Key reasons people deactivate Instagram accounts
  • Full step-by-step walkthrough for deactivating accounts
  • Impacts and risks of deactivating Instagram
  • Differences between deactivation vs deletion
  • Security best practices around deactivated accounts
  • When and how to reactivate your account
  • Answers to the most frequently asked questions

Let‘s start by understanding why so many choose to disable their Instagram accounts in the first place.

Top 10 Reasons People Deactivate Instagram Accounts

While Instagram can be fun and helpful in connecting with friends, it also comes with risks and downsides. Here are the most common reasons people decide to temporarily or permanently deactivate their accounts:

  1. Mental Health Impacts
  2. Privacy + Security Concerns
  3. Reduce Social Media Addiction
  4. Improve Productivity + Focus
  5. Take a Break from Influencing
  6. Avoid Online Bullying/Harassment
  7. Digital Minimalism Trends
  8. Prepare for a Social Media Cleanse
  9. Career Risks Being Too Public
  10. Political Reasons

As you can see, reasons vary – but the option to deactivate offers more control over social media‘s influence in people‘s lives.

Next, let‘s explore the step-by-step process for deactivating accounts.

How to Deactivate Your Instagram Account

Deactivating your Instagram account only takes a few minutes, but offers an accessible way to temporarily disable your profile and content.

Here is the complete walkthrough:

Step 1: Access Instagram‘s Settings

First, log into your Instagram account through the mobile app or desktop site.

Then go to your profile and access the settings:

Mobile App

  • Tap profile icon
  • Tap menu icon
  • Select "Settings"

Desktop Site

  • Click profile picture
  • Click gear icon to access settings

Step 2: Navigate to Deactivation Options

Next, scroll down to find the account management options:


  • Go to Account Settings
  • Select "Temporarily disable account"


  • Click Privacy + Security
  • Select "Deactivate Account"

Step 3: Confirm Deactivation

Finally, approve disabling your account:

  • Select reason for deactivating account
  • Re-enter Instagram password
  • Confirm deactivation

And that‘s it – your Instagram account now enters deactivated status!

Impacts of Deactivating an Instagram Account

Once disabled, here‘s what happens:


  • Profile + content hidden from other users
  • No notifications or messaging
  • Reduced engagement and commitments
  • Temporary break from Instagram


  • Followers lost if deactivated over 1 year
  • Brand awareness may decline
  • FOMO seeing posts from connections
  • Lose access to memories if past 1 year reactivation

While deactivated, it‘s wise to remain vigilant through:

  • Using updated passwords
  • Being alert to suspicious login emails
  • Avoiding clicking questionable links related to Instagram

Now let‘s clarify the critical difference between deactivation and permanent deletion.

Deactivation vs Deletion – What‘s the Difference?

Deactivating an Instagram account is reversible and temporary:

  • You can reactivate within 1 year
  • Content remains intact to restore
  • Just re-login anytime to reinstate

Whereas deleting an Instagram account is permanent:

  • Permanently erases all content
  • Removes followers, messages, photos
  • No option to retrieve data
  • Requires creating fully new account

So weigh carefully based on your intentions!

Next we‘ll explore best practices around security…

4 Security Tips for Deactivated Instagram Accounts

While your data stays hidden when deactivated, it‘s still wise to remain vigilant:

1. Update Passwords

Use updated, complex passwords to guard login details.

2. Enable Two-Factor Authentication

Add 2FA to protect from unauthorized access attempts.

3. Watch for Suspicious Emails

Avoid clicking questionable links related to Instagram.

4. Clean Up Previous Posts

If reactivating an old account, review and remove compromising past posts.

When to Reactivate Your Instagram Account

If life changes or you simply miss Instagram again, know reactivation is straightforward:

Signs It May Be Time to Reactivate

  • Intent for using Instagram productively
  • Past deactivation reason no longer applies
  • Missing connecting with certain people
  • Want to revive account before 1 year deadline

To restore your account, simply login again anytime within 1 year of deactivating.

Just be thoughtful in reviewing privacy settings and past posts upon reactivating Instagram.

FAQs: Deactivating Instagram Accounts

Still have questions? Here are answers to the most frequently asked questions:

Can someone tell if I deactivated Instagram?
No, your profile completely disappears when deactivated.

What happens to my photos if I deactivate?
They are all hidden but will still be there if you reactive within 1 year.

Can I ever get my old username back after deactivating?
Yes, no one else can take your unique username as long as you reactivate within 1 year.

Is all my data wiped out when I deactivate Instagram?
No, deactivate is temporary, so your data stays intact unless you surpass the 1 year reactivation period.

Does deactivating improve mental health?
For many people yes, as it provides a much needed break from constantly checking notifications and scrolling the feed.

What‘s the best way to improve productivity on Instagram?
Set daily time limits in your account settings to avoid wasting too much time endlessly browsing.


Deactivating your Instagram account enables more control over your social media experience. It only takes seconds to disable your profile and content for a temporary breather or more prolonged break.

Just remember key differences between deactivation being reversible vs permanently deleting your account.

Hopefully this guide gave you clarity around safely deactivating your Instagram properly in 2023 when you need a well-deserved respite from the app!

Let me know if you have any other questions in the comments!


Written by Alexis Kestler

A female web designer and programmer - Now is a 36-year IT professional with over 15 years of experience living in NorCal. I enjoy keeping my feet wet in the world of technology through reading, working, and researching topics that pique my interest.