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A Complete Guide to Fixing Instagram Messages Not Sending

Direct Messaging on Instagram has grown (and is still growing) to become an integral core of the social media platform. With DMs, you can communicate beautifully with your followers and other Instagram users. Just like at times Instagram faces loading issues, even the direct messages take face a down time. In this guide, we aggregate some solutions to DM-related issues on Instagram.

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All the solutions in this guide are apply to Android and iPhone. To fix Direct Messages issues on Instagram Web, refer to methods #1, #4, #6, and #7. Let’s get right to it.

1. Check Internet Connection

Of course, it’s impossible to use Instagram without an active internet connection. If you also can’t view photos and videos on your IG timeline in addition to being unable to send direct messages, the problem is most likely connectivity-related. Put your phone in Airplane mode and turn it off after some seconds. That will help refresh your device’s internet connection. If the issue persists, check that your router is working correctly. For cellular data, make sure you have an active internet connection, and you’re in a region with strong network strength and reception.

2. Relaunch Instagram

Close or force stop the app on your smartphone and launch it again. If you still can’t send DMs to anyone, you could try logging out of your Instagram account and signing back in. If you use an Android smartphone, clearing Instagram’s cache might help.

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3. Update Instagram

The snag could also be due to a bug or an in-app malfunction.
Instagram works promptly on correcting these errors, and sometimes, the fixes are shipped with a new app version. Therefore, you might have to install the updated Instagram app to squash the bug preventing you from sending direct messages. Update Instagram on your
device and check if that fixes the DM issue.

4. You’ve Been Blocked, Maybe

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If your internet is working correctly, and so is the Instagram app, there’s the possibility that the issue isn’t from your end. If you can’t send direct messages to a particular user, there are two possibilities to consider. One, the user has configured their account’s privacy settings to restrict DMs. Secondly, the person has blocked you. When blocked on Instagram, you might be unable to send direct messages. We have a detailed guide explaining how to know if someone blocked you on Instagram. You should also read more about what happens when you’ve been blocked on IG.

5. Use a VPN

This trick is for Instagram users who can’t initiate a DM conversation. If you tried sending a first-time DM to anyone on Instagram, but it doesn’t go through, a VPN might help. Here’s how it works.

First, close Instagram, launch the VPN app, and turn on the VPN connection. Now, relaunch Instagram and try sending the DM again. You don’t need to have the VPN on at all times. A VPN helps to get you in the door. You can continue the conversation and send subsequent messages with or without the VPN.

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It’s also worth mentioning that a free VPN would suffice for this. We have compiled and reviewed some great Android VPN apps and for iOS devices as well. They are fast, secure, and all offer free plan/subscription that’s sufficient to help you send DM on Instagram.

6. Check Instagram Server Status

The servers powering Instagram sometimes go offline. Hence causing the entire app or some of its features (direct messaging, for example) to stop working. This has happened multiple times in the past and is bound to happen now and again. You can use tools like DownDetector to check if the Instagram servers are online. The tool also tells you if other users are experiencing any (similar) difficulties with Instagram.

7. Wait It Out

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It’s common practice for social media apps to limit the usage rate of select features or services. As a spam-prevention measure, Instagram could temporarily restrict you from sending DMs if you’ve messaged too many users—particularly people you don’t follow—within a short time span. We’ve seen reports from numerous Instagram users temporarily restricted from sending direct messages because they DM-ed too many people.

And because there’s no official Instagram policy or documentation regarding DM limits, it’s somewhat difficult to know if you’ve sent too many messages or not. However, we discovered that sending between 30 – 100 DMs to users you aren’t following could get you banned from research. So, we recommend you work with that range as a guide and avoid going overboard with the number of (daily) DMs you send.

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As mentioned earlier, the ban is only temporary and typically lasts for 24 hours only. If you cannot wait for that long, and you’re sure you didn’t send multiple DMs in a spam-like manner, proceed to the next troubleshooting solutions below. But if Instagram has truly banned you, you’ve got no choice but to wait till the end of the ban.

8. Update Phone’s OS

If you still can’t send DMs but other Instagram users can, the problem could be from your device. Check for software updates and make sure you have the latest OS version running on your smartphone. This applies to both Android and iOS devices.

DM Freely In Style

Restarting your smartphone (or browser—for Instagram Web) is also an effective troubleshooting solution that we recommend. Drop a comment below if you need any more help.

Next up:

Do you miss out on Instagram messages because you don’t get DM notifications on your smartphone? Check the solutions in the post linked below to fix the problem.

The above article may contain affiliate links which help support Guiding Tech. However, it does not affect our editorial integrity. The content remains unbiased and authentic.

This post was written by Olanrewaju Sodiq and was first posted to

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