DTC 1744 is excessive TC clutch slipping. This could be due to a bad electrical connection at either the external plug on top of the tranny or the internal one that the actual solenoid connects to.
Or it could be a bad solenoid.
Driving without the TC clutch working around town should not cause a problem, it will cause more gas to be used.
On the highway it will cause the tranny fluid temps to be higher, but as long as the temps are controlled or don't exceed 200F or so this will not cause tranny failure.
The fix is a new TC or TCC solenoid. The entire tranny does not need rebuilt though it would be a good idea. Usually when rebuilding the tranny a new TC is part of the deal. Rebuilt ones are better than new OEM. They have the internal fins fully brazed instead of stamped and crimped like the OEM ones are.
If you have an ohm meter you can check the TCC solenoid resistance from the plug on top of the tranny. If it is 13-24 ohms then the solenoid is good. Any less is a bad winding or short, any higher is a a bad connection.
Check between the TCC solenoid pin and both ground and vehicle power on the connector attached to the tranny.