Would Wrigley have built a gum empire if it didn’t? Would Lorillard still be making Newports?
That’s mint’s job!
But since you demand a more satisfying answer let’s give it a shot, shall we?
First, what makes a mint a mint. Most would say it is the presence of aromatic oil. This oil is present in plants of the genus “Mentha.” Spearmint, peppermint – you get the idea. This oil is also used in production of cigarettes, perfumes, muscle rubs, etc. (Menthol is usually derived from pepermint oil and is CH3C6H9(C3H7)OH. I hope you’re satisfied, 'cause I always told my Chem teacher I’d never need this crap in the real world!)
It’s also a minor anesthetic.
So’s alcohol. So’s Novacaine. So’s a blow to the head.
Mint is mint. It “cools” your breath.
Why does it do what you purport? It does it because that’s what it does!!!
Now if you asked nicely “how” it does it…