Does Deactivating Instagram Delete Messages?


So, you want to disable your Instagram account because you don’t have time to consume rubbish content for a while. However, you’re having doubts because you think that you’re going to lose your message once you deactivate your Instagram.

There’s a lot of confusion around what happens when an account is deactivated but it’s pretty simple when you think about it using some principles. Your account is still removed from the Instagram database so people are unable to find your account anymore. Once your account is reactivated, it comes back to the database and everything is back like normal.

Does Deactivating Instagram Delete Messages?

When you disable your Instagram account, everyone who had a DM from you is going to see your Instagram name as ‘Instagram User’. So, your DMs to others won’t be deleted, but the identity of the DM won’t be revealed. Your message with others won’t disappear and anyone who’s had a conversation with you will still be able to see the thread even though your account is deactivated.

The account that they see will show no profile picture and your name will be changed to ‘Instagram User’. When they try and go on your profile, you’re going to see ‘user not found’. Sometimes, Instagram will still show the account’s profile picture if it was recently deactivated. When you reactivate your Instagram account again, they will be able to see the identity of the account.

When you deactivate your Instagram account, your messages don’t get deleted. Instagram keeps all of your messages on their server so whenever you want to activate your account again, all of your messages are there. Instagram doesn’t get rid of any data when your account is disabled, everything stays there until it’s time for you to come back.

What Happens to DMs When You Temporarily Disable Your Account?

Once you disable your account on Instagram, your profile is removed from the app for the duration of time that you specify.

Users will no longer be able to discover you in the search results, and they will also be unable to contact you since your Instagram URL will become invalid. When you reactivate your account, you will reaccess these features.

You may deactivate your account on Instagram for some time, regardless of whether it is a personal account, a creator account, or a business account.

While your account on Instagram is deactivated, you will not be able to see any of your direct messages; however, once you enter back into your account on Instagram, all of your messages will get returned to you. 

If you disable your account on Instagram, people will still read your direct messages. However, if you disable your account for more than 14 days, your account on Instagram will be automatically deleted, and people will no longer see your direct messages anymore.

While the previous messages will still be accessible to the recipient in the direct message inbox, the new messages will get hidden.

Nonetheless, your Instagram handle would no longer get displayed as the sender at the top of the message. As an alternative, it would simply state “Instagram User” Your display photo will also get redacted for security reasons. 

If Someone Deactivated Their Instagram, Can You Still See Messages?

Because deactivating your account on Instagram is only temporary, when you log back in, all of your data and photographs will get restored, and your posts will continue to appear in other people’s feeds once more.

While your account on Instagram is deactivated, you will not be able to see any of your direct messages. When you enter your account on Instagram, all of your messages will get returned to you.

Can You Message A Deactivated Instagram Account?

You can message a deactivated Instagram account if you already had a dm open with them.

The person will be able to see the dm once they activate their account again and check their DMs. If you haven’t got a DM open with them, then you won’t be able to message them when their account is deactivated.

When someone’s account gets deactivated, if you already had a conversation with them on DMs, then you’ll be able to see your conversation with them in the DMs section under the name Instagrammer.

If you open this conversation, then you’ll be able to see all of the previous messages that have been sent back and forward. From here, you’ll be able to message them and the message will be delivered.

Can You Get Messages After Deactivating Instagram?

Disabling your account on Instagram essentially states that you do not wish to utilize the platform for the time being.

When you temporarily deactivate your account on Instagram, the social media platform backs up all your content to their server. It implies that none of your personal information or submitted material will be lost.

During this time, you will not be able to receive messages. Users who have previously sent you messages will discover that your account name has been changed to ‘Instagrammer’ after your account has gotten temporarily suspended.

What Do Others See When You Deactivate Instagram?

When you deactivate your Instagram account, Instagram will let others know that the user isn’t found. Once someone deactivates their Instagram account, it’s taken off Instagram’s database which means that the profile is no longer existing. If someone has an open DM with you, or they can still access your profile via tagged photos, they’re going to see the User not founder error on your profile.

This is an indication to let them know that you’ve deactivated your Instagram account. Another thing that they’re seeing is your profile picture. Sometimes, soon after you’ve deactivated your Instagram account, your profile pictures might still show to others.

What Happens to Follow Requests When You Deactivate Instagram

If you temporarily disable Instagram, your account data is saved, and the data will be there once you reactivate your account. When you deactivate your Instagram account, all of your follow requests aren’t deleted. They’ll still be there when you reactivate your Instagram account for you to accept or decline them.

Can You Unfollow Or Follow A Deactivated Instagram Account?

When you deactivate your Instagram account, your account will be removed from all of Instagram’s search results and feeds.

People who are following you will not be able to see you in their list of people following you as a result of this setting. This means that others will not be able to unfollow your account while it is disabled, simply because they will not be able to locate it while it is disabled.

You will also be unable to follow anyone because you’re logged out of your Instagram account when you deactivate it.

Can Anyone See A Disabled Account on Instagram?

When you disable your account on Instagram, your account is effectively removed from the platform. It implies that your followers will no longer be able to trace you. In reality, no one can locate your account.

If a user searches for your username, you will not appear on the search results page. If you’ve sent DMs to other accounts, they may be able to touch on your profile in the discussion to be taken to your now-disabled account.

Even if the post count at the top of the page may indicate that you have made a post, your account will display ‘No Posts Yet.’ When you block someone on Instagram, this appears quite similar to what happens in real life.

Does Instagram Retag When You Reactivate

Instagram removes your names from photos people have tagged you in so if they do decide to look at tagged people in the photo, your username won’t show up for them to click it. When you reactivate your Instagram account again, Instagram retags you back to people’s tagged photos so people are able to find your account again.

If your name is tagged in the caption of someone’s Instagram picture, Instagram won’t be able to remove it so your name will still be in the caption for people to access. So Instagram will retag you back onto people’s tag photos when you decide to come back – your tag isn’t gone forever.

If I Deactivate My Instagram, Will I Lose Followers?

The simple answer is NO. You won’t lose any followers on Instagram if you disable your Instagram account. No one can see your account when you disable it, therefore, no one can unfollow you and you can’t unfollow them.

When you deactivate your account, all of the data Instagram has stored about your account is temporarily deleted. When you reactivate your account again, all the data that was deleted is then restored.

This means that all of the data will come back onto Instagram. This means that your name will disappear from people’s following and followers list. So, they can’t access your account while it’s deactivated. This also means that you can’t do anything with your account, for example, unfollow people while your account is deactivated.

As soon as you deactivate your Instagram account, people that followed you will lose a following count of 1. And, people that you followed will lose a follower count of 1.

When you come back again, people who followed you will gain a following count of 1. And, people who you followed will gain a follower count of 1.

It’s a very useful thing to deactivate your account if you’re not going to be activated on Instagram. This is because people can’t do anything with your account while you’re gone as you can’t do theirs.

David Johnson is a freelance writer with 9 years of experience writing for Techzillo and other established tech outlets like iMore. His focus and key interests are Apple and accessibility as well as consumer technology in general. Read our Editorial Guidlines and Fact Checking process.


  1. I am being blackmailed. If I deactivate my account does that mean they can’t post the pictures on there to my friends. I am really scared about it. It is so embarrassing.

  2. If I temporarily disable my account and don’t activate it for a long time, say for 1 year, so will my account get deleted?

  3. Do you know if you can “post” to Instagram without everyone seeing it. I want to start my Chatbooks back up but am WAY behind….like I haven’t posted since last March and I don’t want to flood everyone’s feed with my pics.

    • No, unfortunately, there’s no way. You can post it quickly then archive it so it’s saved in your Instagram highlights, that’s about it.

  4. Hey everyone! I had the issue with unfollow. I didn’t know how to mass unfollow IG users when you have not much time. When doing it manually it’s really time consuming. I found mass unfollow instagram bot. Did anyone use it?

  5. I temporarily deleted my account yesterday but I’m still there on the app. I have checked from my husbands Instagram and there I am! I even sent myself a DM and that worked to. So I guess I’ve not disappeared. Any suggestions?

  6. I have deactivated my instagram account but after activating it, I lost many of my posts, videos, photos from instagram.Will I be able to recover them back on my insta profile or not?

  7. I have been Shadow banned twice in a month for really no reason, if I disable my account and activate it later, does the algorithm remember I was being shadowban?

  8. Nothing will happen, but it may be that people themselves can unsubscribe if they see your ban, no one will wait. In my opinion, it’s better not to wait for such actions and just buy instagram likes right away. Is not it so? And then you can do whatever you want.

  9. I have temporarily disabled my Instagram account. When I log back in to reactivate it, will I lose all of my posts, the likes and comments I have received on them? My friend told me that this was the case when they retrieved their account.

  10. When I reactivated it I lost my newest 2 posts I dmd instagram but nothing happened. Should I deactivate it again and hope they come back?

  11. How to reactive your account after you accidentally disabled it? I accidentally disabled my account this morning but want to reactivate it ASAP. Anyone know how?

  12. I deactivated my Instagram account this morning. Can someone let me know when can I possibly be able to reactivate it ?? After how many hours or days?

  13. How can yoy undisable your account because i just put on i just need a break and it won’t let me sing back in

  14. When I deactivated my IG account the comments that I’ve commented to other’s s posts they all disappeared, will they show up when I active my account?

  15. I have made a request to permanently delete my Instagram account. Will all the follow requests I have made be deleted or the users who receive it can still see that there is a request from mr


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