How to Temporarily Disable Instagram: A Step-by-Step Guide for Mental Health and Self-Care


Instagram is a social media platform that has gained immense popularity over the past few years. While it is often an enjoyable way to connect with friends and family, browse photographs, and share ideas, it can also be overwhelming, stressful and negatively affect mental health. Temporarily disabling your Instagram account is a good idea if you want to give yourself a break from the social media pressure. In this article, we will explore reasons why someone might want to disable Instagram temporarily and how to do it.

Why Disable Instagram Temporarily?

There are many reasons why a person might want to temporarily disable their Instagram account. It is important to consider them before making a drastic decision. Here are some common reasons:


Posting, scrolling, and engaging with content every day can take a toll on your energy, creativity, and motivation. A break from Instagram can give you the time and space to recharge your mind and creativity, which can benefit your wellbeing and productivity in the long run.

Mental Health Concerns

Instagram, like all social media platforms, can contribute to feelings of anxiety, depression, and comparison. Comparison is the thief of joy, and constantly comparing yourself to others can be detrimental to self-esteem.

Privacy Concerns

Instagram collects a lot of personal information, and some people may not be comfortable with the level of access that the platform has to their data. Temporarily disabling your account can ensure your data stays private for that duration.

School/ Work Overload

Instagram usage can get in the way of productivity. Temporarily disabling Instagram can help you shift your focus to more important tasks and ensure you’re not distracted by notifications, tags, or messages that may come through the platform.

Potential Benefits and Drawbacks of Disabling Instagram Temporarily

There are a few benefits of disabling Instagram temporarily.

Regain Control

You have the power to disconnect from the platform and take a break. Taking a break means disconnecting from the external validation that comes with likes, comments, and followers. The pressure will be off your shoulder just by taking some time away from Instagram.

Reconnect with The Real World

Disabling your Instagram account can help you reconnect with your life outside of the screen. You can go to the gym, paint, or read a book without the constant need to document your every move.

However, there are also some drawbacks to disabling Instagram temporarily, such as feeling disconnected from social circles and not being up to date with the latest news in your industry. You might miss out on important events or updates that were exclusively shared through Instagram. Before you temporarily disable Instagram, think about what you might miss out on, and weigh the pros and cons.

How to Temporarily Disable Instagram

Here are the steps to follow to temporarily disable your Instagram account:

  1. Open Instagram website in a new tab or window.
  2. Sign in with your username and password.
  3. Click on your profile page located in the top-right corner of the screen.
  4. Click on the ‘Edit Profile’ button next to your username, profile picture and bio.
  5. Scroll down and click on the ‘Temporarily Disable My Account’ option at the bottom of the page.
  6. Choose the reason why you want to disable your account.
  7. Re-enter your password and click on ‘Temporarily Disable Account’.

Your account will be temporarily disabled and won’t be visible publicly. However, your information, including your photos, comments, and likes, will still be stored on Instagram’s server and will return when you reactivate your account.

Different Scenarios when Temporary Disabling is the Best Option

Here are the different scenarios when temporary disabling your Instagram account might be the best option:

When You Need a Break

If you’re feeling overwhelmed, stressed, or anxious due to the pressures of living life in a digital world, taking a break from Instagram can help you get a mental health boost.

When You Have Other Things to Focus On

If you’re studying, writing, or working on a project that requires your full attention and concentration, you may want to disable Instagram temporarily to help yourself focus.

When You’re Going Through a Difficult Time

It’s essential to take care of yourself during difficult times, and if Instagram may be a trigger for you, it might be good to detox from it for a while.

Different Approaches and Tools Available

There are many ways to take a break from social media, including unplugging your internet, deleting apps, and using browser add-ons and third-party services.

Browser Add-Ons

Browsers like Chrome, Firefox, and Safari offer plug-ins, which can help you avoid spending too much time on Instagram. Some useful add-ons to note are KeepMeOut, Freedom, and StayFocusd, which offer features that allow users to set time limits on website access or block access to certain sites/page for specific timeframe.

Third-Party Services

There are also third-party services designed to help you temporarily disable Instagram or other social media platforms. For instance, IFTTT is valuable for automating tasks and creating your own recipes. Hootsuite is another useful app that allows you to manage multiple social media accounts through a single dashboard and schedule content at times that work best for you.

Resisting Instagram’s Engagement Tactics

Instagram’s algorithms, gamification strategies, and notifications are all designed to keep users engaged. The following are tips on how to resist these engagement tactics:

Keep Your Device Away

Leaving your phone or device in another room or turning it off is an excellent way to reduce your screen time and resist engagement tactics. That way, there are no notifications or distractions to create a compulsive urge to check Instagram, and your time can be invested in other activities.

Be Mindful of Time Waster Accounts

Be mindful of which accounts you follow and which ones you don’t. It is essential to choose good content and unfollow accounts that make you feel negative or waste your time. Follow accounts that inspire you and create a positive atmosphere.

The Psychological Impact of Social Media

While social media has its advantages, it can also be heavily linked to psychological problems ranging from feeling less connected to society to negative mood and anxiety disorders. Social media addiction subject individuals to behaviors like cyberbullying, online aggression, over-comparisons, and fake news.

Therefore, taking a break from social media is vital to promoting good mental health and well-being. It can lower stress and anxiety levels, reduce feelings of negativity, and help maintain healthy boundaries and relationships with technology and social media.


When it feels like your life is consumed by Instagram, it may be time to take a break. Disabling Instagram temporarily is an easy process, and it can have both psychological and emotional benefits. However, it is important to consider the pros and cons carefully before making a decision. While you may miss out on some essential updates, you will be able to reconnect with the real world and take care of your mental health. Lastly, remember to prioritize your self-care needs and balance the digital world with the physical world.

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